THE BYZANTINE DARK AGES DEBATES IN ARCHAEOLOGY

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The Byzantine Dark Ages

Author : Michael J. Decker
ISBN : 9781472536051
Genre : Social Science
File Size : 60.95 MB
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The Byzantine Dark Ages explores current debates about the sudden transformation of the Byzantine Empire in the wake of environmental, social and political changes. Those studying the Byzantine Empire, the successor to the Roman Empire in the eastern Mediterranean, have long recognized that the mid-7th century CE ushered in sweeping variations in the way of life of many inhabitants of the Mediterranean world, with evidence of the decline of the size and economic prosperity of cities, a sharp fall in expressions of literary culture, the collapse in trade networks, and economic and political instability. Michael J. Decker looks at the material evidence for the 7th to 9th centuries, lays out the current academic discourse about its interpretation, and suggests new ways of thinking about this crucial era. Important to readers interested in understanding how and why complex societies and imperial systems undergo and adapt to stresses, this clearly written, accessible work will also challenge students of archaeology and history to think in new ways when comprehending the construction of the past.
Category: Social Science

Ethics And Burial Archaeology

Author : Duncan Sayer
ISBN : 9781350065154
Genre : History
File Size : 30.42 MB
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The investigation of human remains has always been central to archaeological, but archaeologists are not the only ones with an interest in their treatment. Political groups, religious organisations, descendant communities and disenfranchised interest groups are all becoming more vocal in expressing their opinions on this subject on a world stage. This book sets a new agenda for ethical studies in mortuary investigation, adducing a series of case studies which can be used to understand the questions facing burial archaeology. Who owns the dead - not just their bodies but also their stories? Do the remains themselves matter or are there other political agendas which influence interest groups? The author encourages archaeologists to be more open and inclusive when conducting mortuary projects, as it is often the perception of secrecy or interference with the dead that raises concern about the treatment of historical and scientifically important skeletal remains.
Category: History

Archaeology And Text

Author : John Moreland
ISBN : 0715629980
Genre : History
File Size : 43.3 MB
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Archaeology and Text challenges traditional assumptions about the relationship between history and archaeology by re-evaluating the role of artefacts and documents in the reconstruction of the historical past. Previous attempts to create a rapprochement between the disciplines have been undermined by a failure to see artefacts and documents as anything more than simple sources of information about the past. The central argument of this concise and original book is that both must be seen in terms of their efficacy in the past, in particular as technologies of power and resistance. Drawing upon recent work in theoretical archaeology, John Moreland puts forward a series of case studies from early medieval Europe, early modern North America, and the prehistoric Near East to illustrate the ways in which both documents and artefacts were ‘activated’ in the reproduction and transformation of power and identity. The concluding chapter warns that any contribution these arguments may make to the better understanding of the historical past will be negated if we fail to appreciate the very real dangers posed, to all the peoples of the past, by the recent ‘linguistic turn’ in both disciplines.
Category: History

Dark Age Economics

Author : Richard Hodges
ISBN : 0715616668
Genre : History
File Size : 52.57 MB
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It was in the second half of the first millennium A.D. that northern Europe took on the basic configuration that it now presents. Recently a wealth of new archaeological evidence has emerged to enable historians to assess the growth of international trade and the evolution of towns in this crucial period. This book analyses models of economic evelopment in the light of this new evidence to evaluate not only the changing character of the first post-Roman urban centers but also the organization of the countryside which supported them. Boat remains, coins and trade artifacts are all examined. Finally, a general account is offered of the role of towns and trade in the creation of Western Europe. This is the first synthesis of its kind for the medieval period, and confirms the importance of archaeology as a major source of evidence for an understanding of the economic history of the Dark Ages.
Category: History

Evidential Reasoning In Archaeology

Author : Robert Chapman
ISBN : 9781472528933
Genre : Social Science
File Size : 69.42 MB
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How do archaeologists work with the data they identify as a record of the cultural past? How are these data collected and construed as evidence? What is the impact on archaeological practice of new techniques of data recovery and analysis, especially those imported from the sciences? To answer these questions, the authors identify close-to-the-ground principles of best practice based on an analysis of examples of evidential reasoning in archaeology that are widely regarded as successful, contested, or instructive failures. They look at how archaeologists put old evidence to work in pursuit of new interpretations, how they construct provisional foundations for inquiry as they go, and how they navigate the multidisciplinary ties that make archaeology a productive intellectual trading zone. This case-based approach is predicated on a conviction that archaeological practice is a repository of considerable methodological wisdom, embodied in tacit norms and skilled expertise Â? wisdom that is rarely made explicit except when contested, and is often obscured when questions about the status and reach of archaeological evidence figure in high-profile crisis debates.
Category: Social Science

Towns And Trade In The Age Of Charlemagne

Author : Richard Hodges
ISBN : STANFORD:36105110659906
Genre : History
File Size : 79.78 MB
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This is an illustrated study of towns and trade in the age of Charlemagne, in the Debates in Archaeology series, which analyses urban continuity and discontinuity in Europe during the Dark Ages. It examines the important continuing discussion of the rebirth of urbanism in Carolingian Europe. Drawing upon new archaeological evidence from southern and northern Europe, Richard Hodges looks at the end of towns in Roman antiquity, the phenomenon of the Dark Age emporium, and the hotly disputed mechanisms which led to the inception of market towns during the age of Charlemagne. He focusses particularly on recently excavated evidence from the Mediterranean, as well as from England.
Category: History

The Archaeology Of Mediterranean Placemaking

Author : Richard Hodges
ISBN : 9781350006638
Genre : Social Science
File Size : 49.53 MB
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Butrint has been one of the largest archaeological projects in the Mediterranean over the last two decades. Major excavations and a multi-volume series of accompanying scientific publications have made this a key site for our developing understanding of the Roman and Medieval Mediterranean. Through this set of interwoven reflections about the archaeology and cultural heritage history of his twenty-year odyssey in south-west Albania, Richard Hodges considers how the Butrint Foundation protected and enhanced Butrint's spirit of place for future generations. Hodges reviews Virgil's long influence on Butrint and how its topographic archaeology has now helped to invent a new narrative and identity. He then describes the struggle of placemaking in Albania during the early post-communist era, and finally asks, in the light of the Butrint Foundation's experience, who matters in the shaping of a place Â? international regulations, the nation, the archaeologist, the visitor, the local community or some combination of all of these stakeholders? With appropriate maps and photographs, this book aims to offer an unusual but important new direction for archaeology in the Mediterranean. It should be essential reading for archaeologists, classical historians, medievalists, cultural heritage specialists, tourism specialists as well as those interested in the Mediterranean's past and future.
Category: Social Science

Empowering Communities Through Archaeology And Heritage

Author : Peter G. Gould
ISBN : 9781350036239
Genre : Social Science
File Size : 82.29 MB
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Peter G. Gould seeks to identify the success factors associated with economic development projects within communities adjacent to archaeological or heritage sites, a growing interest among archaeologists and heritage managers. Typically, the success of site museums, tourism businesses, or crafts cooperatives is rarely reported on in scholarly literature or subjected to systematic study. This book addresses that gap. Gould argues that the success of community projects is inextricably linked to the mechanisms community members use to govern their project activities, and provides a much-needed assessment of the issues relating to community governance. Drawing together insights from economic analysis, political science, tourism scholarship, complexity scholarship, and the governance of non-profit enterprises, Gould suggests a model for community governance and illustrates the workings of that model through four case studies. Armed with this book's theoretical foundation, heritage professionals will have practical approaches to consider when designing community economic development projects.
Category: Social Science

Archaeology Theory And The Middle Ages

Author : John Moreland
ISBN : 0715636898
Genre : History
File Size : 33.41 MB
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In this important volume of collected essays John Moreland demonstrates the ways in which a theoretically informed archaeology significantly enhances our understanding of the early Middle Ages, and indeed of the past more generally. Beginning from the premise that theory must be worked through in data (since abstract theorising conjures up only a historical pictures of the past), he applies a consistent and contemporary body of theory, broadly characterised as 'post-processual', in a series of case-studies. The essays are enhanced by extensive notes and commentary, updating theoretical perspectives on, and data pertaining to, some of the key issues in contemporary archaeology - the role of theory, identities, the appropriation/destruction of the past, gift exchange, object biographies, the influence of our present on the construction of the past, the impact of texts on past societies etc. The result will be of interest not just to scholars and students of the early Middle Ages, but to archaeologists and historians more generally.
Category: History

Archaeology And History In Roman Medieval And Post Medieval Greece

Author : William Caraher
ISBN : 0754664422
Genre : History
File Size : 56.16 MB
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Bringing together studies of archaeological method and analysis with detailed work of historical interpretation, the papers here demonstrate how analysis informed by multiple disciplines sheds new light on such important topics as the end of Antiquity, the so-called Byzantine Dark Ages, the contours of the emerging Byzantine civilization, and the complex character of identity in post-medieval Greece. More broadly, this volume shows how the study of the material culture of post-classical Greece has made significant contributions to both the larger archaeological and historical discourse.
Category: History