Material Culture and Social Identities in the Ancient World

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Shelley Hales, Tamar Hodos
Cambridge University Press, 2010 - Art - 339 pages
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Recent studies have highlighted the diversity, complexity, and plurality of identities in the ancient world. At the same time, scholars have acknowledged the dynamic role of material culture, not simply in reflecting those identities but their role in creating and transforming them. This volume explores and compares two influential approaches to the study of social and cultural identities, the model of globalization and theories of hybrid cultural development. In a series of case studies, an international team of archaeologists and art historians considers how various aspects of material culture can be used to explore complex global and local identity structures across the geographical and chronological span of antiquity. The essays examine the civilizations of the Greeks, Romans, Etruscans, Persians, Phoenicians, and Celts. Reflecting on the current state of our understanding of cultural interaction and antiquity, they also dwell on contemporary thoughts of identity, cultural globalization, and resistance that shape and are shaped by academic discourses on the cultural empires of Greece and Rome.

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About the author (2010)

Shelley Hales is Senior Lecturer in the Department of Classics and Ancient History, University of Bristol. She is the author of Roman Houses and Social Identity and is co-editor, with Joanna Paul, of Pompeii in the Public Imagination from Its Rediscovery to Today.

Tamar Hodos is Senior Lecturer in the Department of Archaeology and Anthropology at the University of Bristol. Author of Local Responses to Colonization in the Iron Age Mediterranean, she co-directs the Caltilar (Lycia) project and serves on the editorial board of Anatolian Studies.

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