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The social role of hunting and wild animals in late Bronze Age Crete: a social zooarchaeological analysis

The social role of hunting and wild animals in late Bronze Age Crete: a social zooarchaeological analysis
The social role of hunting and wild animals in late Bronze Age Crete: a social zooarchaeological analysis
This thesis investigates the social role of hunting and wild animals in Late Bronze Age west Crete, particularly in Chania. The areas addressed are: the nature of human interaction with wild animals (red and fallow deer and agrimia) in Late Bronze Age Crete, including how might concepts of ‘wild’ and ‘domestic’ have been perceived and enacted; the evidence for the ‘social’ role played by wild animals in Late Bronze Age Crete; and the role human-(‘wild’)animal engagement played in the social and political transformations that were taking place in Late Bronze Age west Crete.
These questions are investigated predominantly through primary zooarchaeological analysis, but also referring to other categories of data such as iconographic material. This analysis is situated within a broader body of theoretical approaches to understanding human-animal relationships and adopts, as far as possible, a non-anthropocentric approach. In order to investigate the data, a framework of analysis was devised to link the relationships with the living animal, with the dead animal, and with the animal bone remains, as an interconnected series of embodied events, termed here ‘a cycle of engagement’.
It is concluded that interaction with wild animals was an important practice in Late Bronze Age Crete, however a ‘wild’ or ‘domestic’ status may, in cases, have been contextually defined. It is proposed that interaction with ‘wild’ animals would have been encounters of (mutually) heightened physical and sensory awareness, which would have contributed to a sense of relationship between hunter and hunted, and perhaps created contexts within which traditional boundaries might be transcended. It is suggested that consumption of these hunted animals in large-scale (multi-species) communal consumption events would have contributed to the development and maintenance of the west Cretan regional identity at the end of the Late Bronze Age.
Harris, Kerry
0c64363c-3e8e-4ef4-95e6-e52a94f815d0
Harris, Kerry
0c64363c-3e8e-4ef4-95e6-e52a94f815d0
Hamilakis, Yannis
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Harris, Kerry (2014) The social role of hunting and wild animals in late Bronze Age Crete: a social zooarchaeological analysis. University of Southampton, Faculty of Humanities, Doctoral Thesis, 465pp.

Record type: Thesis (Doctoral)

Abstract

This thesis investigates the social role of hunting and wild animals in Late Bronze Age west Crete, particularly in Chania. The areas addressed are: the nature of human interaction with wild animals (red and fallow deer and agrimia) in Late Bronze Age Crete, including how might concepts of ‘wild’ and ‘domestic’ have been perceived and enacted; the evidence for the ‘social’ role played by wild animals in Late Bronze Age Crete; and the role human-(‘wild’)animal engagement played in the social and political transformations that were taking place in Late Bronze Age west Crete.
These questions are investigated predominantly through primary zooarchaeological analysis, but also referring to other categories of data such as iconographic material. This analysis is situated within a broader body of theoretical approaches to understanding human-animal relationships and adopts, as far as possible, a non-anthropocentric approach. In order to investigate the data, a framework of analysis was devised to link the relationships with the living animal, with the dead animal, and with the animal bone remains, as an interconnected series of embodied events, termed here ‘a cycle of engagement’.
It is concluded that interaction with wild animals was an important practice in Late Bronze Age Crete, however a ‘wild’ or ‘domestic’ status may, in cases, have been contextually defined. It is proposed that interaction with ‘wild’ animals would have been encounters of (mutually) heightened physical and sensory awareness, which would have contributed to a sense of relationship between hunter and hunted, and perhaps created contexts within which traditional boundaries might be transcended. It is suggested that consumption of these hunted animals in large-scale (multi-species) communal consumption events would have contributed to the development and maintenance of the west Cretan regional identity at the end of the Late Bronze Age.

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Published date: July 2014
Organisations: University of Southampton, Archaeology

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 374395
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/374395
PURE UUID: 3b4ed1d3-0de3-4bc5-be99-ba8aa8df82b4

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Date deposited: 17 Feb 2015 13:24
Last modified: 17 Jul 2017 21:27

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Contributors

Author: Kerry Harris
Thesis advisor: Yannis Hamilakis

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