Building Communities: House, Settlement and Society in the Aegean and Beyond : Proceedings of a Conference Held at Cardiff University, 17-21 April 2001

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Ruth Westgate, Nicolas Ralph Edmund Fisher, James Whitley
British School at Athens, 2007 - Architecture - 430 pages
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This volume explores a range of approaches to the built environment of the ancient Mediterranean world, with two main aims: first, to relate archaeological evidence to the wider cultural and historical context, and second, to bridge the conventional divide between prehistoric and Classical archaeology. It contains 40 papers by an international array of scholars, ranging from the Neolithic to Late Antiquity, and geographically from the Aegean to Italy, North Africa, Egypt and the Black Sea. Major themes include: the theory and methodology of analysing and interpreting built space; the relationship of the built environment to social and political structures and the formation of states; the development of civic and religious space; the identification of households in the archaeological record; the formation and interpretation of domestic assemblages; problems in the identification of functional areas within the house; changing conceptions of public and private; space and gender; the function and significance of decoration in houses and palaces; the uses of ethnoarchaeology and virtual reality for understanding architectural remains; the effects of acculturation in the domestic sphere; the archaeology of the domestic economy; the problems of combining literary and archaeological evidence. The papers offer many new interpretations of a wide range of material and, taken together, give an exciting overview of the latest scholarship and ideas in this rich and developing field of study. The conference formed part of the British Academy / AHRB-funded project 'Strategies, Structures and Ideologies of the Built Environment'.

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