Architecture of Minoan Crete: Constructing Identity in the Aegean Bronze Age

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University of Texas Press, May 1, 2010 - Architecture
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Ever since Sir Arthur Evans first excavated at the site of the Palace at Knossos in the early twentieth century, scholars and visitors have been drawn to the architecture of Bronze Age Crete. Much of the attraction comes from the geographical and historical uniqueness of the island. Equidistant from Europe, the Middle East, and Africa, Minoan Crete is on the shifting conceptual border between East and West, and chronologically suspended between history and prehistory. In this culturally dynamic context, architecture provided more than physical shelter; it embodied meaning. Architecture was a medium through which Minoans constructed their notions of social, ethnic, and historical identity: the buildings tell us about how the Minoans saw themselves, and how they wanted to be seen by others.

Architecture of Minoan Crete is the first comprehensive study of the entire range of Minoan architecture—including houses, palaces, tombs, and cities—from 7000 BC to 1100 BC. John C. McEnroe synthesizes the vast literature on Minoan Crete, with particular emphasis on the important discoveries of the past twenty years, to provide an up-to-date account of Minoan architecture. His accessible writing style, skillful architectural drawings of houses and palaces, site maps, and color photographs make this book inviting for general readers and visitors to Crete, as well as scholars.


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One The Land the People Identity
Two Architecture and Social Identity in Neolithic Crete ca 70003000 BC
Three Local Regional and Ethnic Identities in Early Prepalatial Architecture ca 30002200 BC
Four Architectural Experiments and Hierarchical Identity in Late Prepalatial Architecture ca 22001900 BC
Five The First Palaces and the Construction of Power ca 19001750 BC
Six The Protopalatial City and Urban Identity ca 19001750 BC
Seven The Second Palace at Knossos and the Reconstruction of Minoan Identity ca 17501490 BC
Eight Comparing the Neopalatial Palaces ca 17501490 BC
Eleven After the Palaces ca 13601200 BC
Twelve Survival and Memory in LM IIIC ca 12001100 BC
Conclusion Architecture and Identity
Appendix Useful Websites
Works Cited

Nine Houses and Towns in the Neopalatial Period ca 17501490 BC
Ten Buildings Frescoes and the Language of Power in the Final Palatial Period ca 14901360 BC

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About the author (2010)

JOHN C. McENROE is the John and Anne Fischer Professor of Fine Arts at Hamilton College in Clinton, New York, and a member of the American School of Classical Studies in Athens. He has worked in Crete for many years as a field archaeologist and excavation architect. His recent publications include Critical Perspectives in Art History (co-edited with Deborah Pokinski) and Pseira V: The Architecture of Pseira.

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