Materiality and Social Practice investigates the transformative potential arising from the interplay between material forms, social practices and intercultural relations. Such a focus necessitates an approach that takes a transcultural perspective as a fundamental methodology and, then a broader understanding of the inter-relationship between humans and objects. Adopting a transcultural approach forces us to change archaeology's approach towards items coming from the outside. By using them mostly for reconstructing systems of exchange or for chronology, archaeology has for a long time reduced them to their properties as objects and as being foreign. This volume explores the notion that the significance of such items does not derive from the transfer from one place to another as such but, rather, from the ways in which they were used and contextualised. The main question is how, through their integration into discourses and practices, new frameworks of meaning were created conforming neither with what had existed in the receiving society nor in the area of origin of the objects.
Joseph Maran is Professor of pre- and protohistory at Heidelberg University and co-director of the Heidelberg Cluster of Excellence `Asia and Europe in a Global Context'. His research interests relate to issues of interculturality and changing lifeworlds, relationships between architecture and social practice and between material culture and social memory in societies of the 4th-2nd millennia BC in the eastern Mediterranean. Philipp W. Stockhammer is professor for prehistoric archaeology with a focus on the Eastern Mediterranean at Ludwig-Maximilians-University (LMU) Munich and co-director of Max Planck-Harvard Research Center for the Archaeoscience of the Ancient Mediterranean, Jena. His research focuses on the transformative power of intercultural encounters, human-thing-entanglements, social practices and the integration of archaeological and scientific interpretation. From 2015-2018, he acted as Speaker of the Collaborative Research Project "BEFIM". He published monographs on Urnfield swords, pottery of the post-palace period in the lower city of Tiryns, the appropriation of foreign pottery in the Eastern Mediterranean Late Bronze Age, and countless papers.
1. Introduction (J. Maran/P. Stockhammer) 2. Words and things: reflections on people's interactions with the material world (H. P. Hahn) 3. Magic, materials and matter: understanding different ontologies (C. Gosden) 4. Material concerns and colonial encounters ( M. Rowlands and P.van Dommelen) 5. Matter of Fact: Transcultural contacts in the late Bronze Age Eastern Mediterranean (A. B. Knapp) 6. Encountering the Foreign. (De-)Constructing alterity in the archaeologies of the Bronze Mediterranean (D. Panagiotopoulos) 7. Trade goods reproducing merchants? The materiality of Mediterranean late Bronze Age exchange (G. J. van Wijngaarden) 8. Migrant drinking assemblages in Aegean Bronze Age settings (J. Rutter) 9. Entangled Pottery: Phenomena of appropriation in the late Bronze Age eastern Mediterranean (P. W. Stockhammer) 10. Can we say, What's behind all those sherds? (R. Jung) 11. Ceremonial feasting equipment, social space and interculturality in post-Palatial Tiryns (J. Maran) 12. From Minoan Crete to Mycenean Greece and beyond: the dissemination of ritual practices and their material correlates in ceremonial architecture (E. Borgna) 13. The intercultural transformative capacities or irregularly appropriated goods (S. Sherratt) 14. Lasting Impressions. The appropriation of sealing practices in Minoan Crete (S. Cappel) 15. Hyperculture, tradition and identity: how to communicate with seals in times of global action (M. Heinz and J. Linke) 16. The role of the Canaanite population in the Aegean migration to the southern Levant in the late 2nd Millennium BCE (A. Yasur-Landau) 17. The practical logic of style and memory in early First Millennium Levantine Ivories (M. H. Feldman) 18. An Introduction to the divine statues of, and the objects belonging to, the gods in Mesopotamia during the Old Babylonian Period (c. 2000-1595 BCE) (M. Maggio)