Seen on the Classicists list:
Graduate Archaeology at Oxford and the School of Archaeology at the University of Oxford invite the submission of proposals for papers and posters to an interdisciplinary conference titled "Death, Disasters, Downturn. The Archaeology of Crises." Oxford, 24-25 April 2010.
"From plagues to economic collapses, natural disasters to the deaths of loved ones, crisis, in its social, economic, psychological, biological, and ecological manifestations has indelibly shaped human existence. Since it is often in the breakdown of societies that the structures which composed them become clearest, crises provide an especially good window onto how groups have functioned historically. It can affect entire communities or single individuals; it can be confined to a singular time and space or it can reoccur episodically. As some of the most fascinating moments in human history, isolated cases or forms of crisis have been much-discussed among scholars within single fields. Rarely, however, have such debates crossed the boundaries of specific disciplines to be studied in a wider, over-arching context."
The goal of this conference is to start a discussion about the archaeological study of crises from across disciplines: sciences, archaeology, anthropology, ancient history. The questions we will raise are manifold: what constitutes a crisis? Which groups in the past have been most affected by crises? How can the archaeological record shed light on crises of various magnitudes? Most importantly, how can the archaeology of crisis be used to shed light on societies past and present?
Abstracts should not exceed 500 words in length and should be sent as attachments (in PDF format) to: gao AT arch.ox.ac.uk
Deadline for abstract submission: Sunday, 6 December 2009.
Selected papers will be published in a volume, as part of the GAO monograph series.
For further information visit the GAO website (http://www.arch.ox.ac.uk/conferences/articles/gao-annual-conference.html)