Browsing Faculty of Humanities by Subjects
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Building blocks: structural contexts and carved stonesEarly medieval carved stones can be many things: landscape monuments, churchyard monuments or memorials, grave markers, architectural elements usually in churches or public commemorative statements to name a few (not exclusive) functions. However, there are also hints that carved stones could be part of settlement micro-landscapes built into or next to buildings or forts. This paper looks at a range of archaeological contexts for the use of early medieval carved stones in structural (non-church related) contexts in Britain. This small group of monuments includes both the more ‘public’ structural monuments on display and ‘hidden’ monuments built into structures and not visible. These monuments are explored in this paper in terms of memory, movement and performance – where engagement could be both habitual behaviour and part of specific events of social practice and memory. The spatial and depositional dimensions will be explored and how routine, even possibly mundane, engagement with stones in these settings may offer a different perspective on how monuments can be part of the process of memorisation and selective forgetting.
Conversion, Ritual, and Landscape: Streoneshalh (Whitby), Osingadun, and the Anglo-Saxon Cemetery at Street House, North YorkshireThis paper considers the conversion of the Anglo-Saxons as a social process through the improvised mortuary rituals of one local community. It argues that the royal monastery of Streoneshalh (Whitby) had an estate at Osingadun (modern Easington), which should be connected to a seventh-century cemetery at nearby Street House. It interprets the cemetery as an engine for negotiating and producing social and religious change.
Crossing Boundaries: Using GIS in Literary Studies, History and BeyondGeographical Information Systems (GIS) have become widely accepted in historical research and there are increasing calls for them to be used more widely in humanities disciplines. The difficulty is, however, that GIS comes from a quantitative, social science paradigm that is frequently not well suited to the kinds of sources that are widely used in the humanities. The challenge for GIS, if it is to become a widely used tool within the humanities, is thus two-fold. First, approaches need to be developed that allow humanities sources to be exploited within a data model that is usable by GIS. Second, and more importantly, researchers need to demonstrate that by adopting GIS they can make significant new and substantive contributions to knowledge across humanities disciplines. This paper explores both of these questions focussing primarily on examples from literary studies, in the form of representations of the English Lake District and history, looking at nineteenth century public health reports.
Developing computational approaches for the study of movement: assessing the role of visibility and landscape markers in terrestrial navigation during Iberian Late PrehistoryThe topic of movement in archaeology has been extensively studied. Research on human movement during prehistory has become in archaeology and anthropology one of the bases for understanding the dynamics of social and economic relationships, technology, social identity and territoriality, among many other important themes. Although archaeological investigations related to movement have increased in the last decade, the majority have usually relied on “static” evidence, that is, on the analysis of the materials or objects that are found in specific sites, establishing the relationship between them and their points of origin or destination (Branting 2004). In recent years, using spatial technologies, more research has aimed to investigate movement from a landscape perspective, in which more attention has been paid to the processes that may have happened on journeys. Some of these studies have directly or indirectly analysed the possible factors influencing the decisions about which paths to take, the mechanics of movement and the archaeological evidence related to it (Llobera 2000; Fairén Jiménez 2004; Cruz Berrocal 2004; Fábrega Alvarez 2006; Fábrega Alvarez / Parcero Oubiña 2007; Llobera / Slukin 2007; Fiz / Orengo 2008; Murrieta-Flores 2010, 2012a; Mlekuzˇ 2010; in the current volume, Lock et al. and Mlekuzˇ among others). In the specific case of Iberia, megalithic monuments are among the archaeological elements at a landscape scale that have been linked to potential patterns of movement, and it has been argued that, besides their symbolic and funerary meanings, they may also have been utilized as landscape markers.