CFP: Burial and social change in ancient Italy

Seen on the Classicists list:

We invite offers of papers for the forthcoming workshop: “Burial and social

change in ancient Italy, 9th-5th century BC: approaching social agents”. The
workshop will be held at the British School at Rome on June 7th 2011.

With its great regional diversity and variety of community forms and
networks, Italy offers a unique context for exploring how and why
communities developed towards socio-political complexity from the Iron Age
(9th century BC) to the Archaic period (6th-5th century BC). By analysing
the rich funerary evidence from this period, the aim of this workshop is to
investigate the role people had in promoting and directing social change as
well as the impact that major historical phenomena (e.g. ‘urbanisation’) had
on individuals or specific groups of individuals. We are especially
interested in how the social role of women, children, the elderly and
non-elite individuals can be reconstructed from the way in which these roles
are expressed/negotiated through mortuary ritual. We wish to maintain a
broad geographical scope, and are especially keen to have contributions on
less ‘mainstream’ regions (such as the Veneto and Samnium), preferably
addressing the following questions:
– Does the presence of women, sub-adults, elderly and non-elite people vary
through time and/or in different regions of Italy? Can these fluctuations
indicate changing definitions of community based on access to formal burial?
– What is the relationship between social status and gender/age identities?
When does gender/age become more/less important in ritual expressions of
status and social structure?
– How do we interpret the involvement of women and sub-adults in empowering
activities such as ritual drinking? How does the ritual use of alcohol/food
in the funerary sphere function as a means to negotiate the role and status
of the dead and the mourners?
– Is the placement of the dead in the landscape indicative of issues of
territoriality, and when is the use of cemeteries suggestive of communal
commitment to specific places?
The deadline for abstracts is April 15th. Later submissions may be
considered but we advise potential speakers to contact us by the deadline
above. There will be flexibility regarding the length of papers (20-45 min).
Titles and abstracts (around 200 words) should be sent to the workshop
convenors: Elisa Perego (elisaperego78 AT and Rafael Scopacasa
(rs236 AT The deadline for registration is April 30th, but we
strongly advise those interested in accommodation at the BSR to contact
Rafael Scopacasa before that date.

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