Call for Papers for a session at The 22nd Indo-Pacific Prehistory Association conference, Hue, Vietnam, 23-28 September 2018
Session: Same same but different – contacts between distant worlds
From our hominin ancestors in the Palaeolithic world until the end of the ancient era there seem to have been closer contacts between Europe, Eurasia and Southeast/East Asia which might have been forgotten due to sheer time or diverse historical events like the formation of states. The archaeological evidence invites us to take a closer look at the similarities and to investigate the different cultural contexts. From sharing same ideas and concepts to influences by trade this panel tries to highlight the cultural markers to provide a more integrated view.
The session has already been approved with the papers below. However, more papers (20 minutes + 10 minutes discussion time) are welcome. If you feel your idea fits in, please send an abstract and short CV to Jacobus Bracker, Birte Meller and Lilian Schönheit (firstname.lastname@example.org) until 31 March 2018.
Function follows Form? – On the resemblance of prehistoric artefacts (Birte Meller, Hamburg)
Contact and communication between forager communities in the Pleistocene world and the beginning of the Holocene seem to be broader than in later times. This seems to be supported by the archaeological record, for example within the toolkits – which might just be due to the resources or the spread of pottery, which is similar in form and decoration. But some innovations take a different route than the transition to agriculture or ideas of antiquity. This paper will look at the connections in prehistoric times and tries to describe the ways of interaction often overlooked by historiography.
From Athens to Angkor and back (Jacobus Bracker, Hamburg/Freiburg)
Comparing large and architectural sculpture from ancient Greece and Cambodia seems to be an odd task at first. However, when taking a closer look at stylistic elements or narrative structures astonishing similarities are revealed. Fascinating examples for such comparisons are the styles of sculpture from Phnom Da (6th century CE) and the Aphaia temple on Aegina (6th century BCE) or the narrative structures of mythological reliefs from Banteay Chhmar or Angkor and classical Greece. Of course, no simple explanation is at hand considering the vast distances in time and space between these cultures. However, the paper will investigate how methods of comparative archaeology can contribute to the understanding of the similar phenomena in different cultures and indicate pathways for migrating images.
Economic & cultural trade between South Asia and the Mediterranean in the first Centuries BCE (Lilian Schönheit, Hamburg)
While the history of economy and culture of both regions – South Asia and the ancient Mediterranean – are well studied, the connections between them are barely recognized. Already in the first years BCE trading connections from Greece and Rome to India and Sri Lanka were well established. These contacts grew during the following centuries and provoked not only an economic, but also a cultural exchange from one end of the known world to the other. This effect is reflected in archeological remains from western China via the Thai-Malay-Peninsula and India to Egypt and Rome and will be discussed in the paper.