This is an online event.
Sponsored by: Archaeological Institute of America
Small coastal fishing communities are mentioned obliquely if at all in ancient literature, often in a pejorative sense and typically as “others.” Yet they provided essential commodities – most obviously salt and marine products – and often connected inland power centers with seaborne trade. In this lecture, I describe an approach that combines archaeological search for these elusive settlements with my current ethnographic project that uses oral histories from contemporary fishermen and women to identify similarities and differences among these communities throughout the world. These oral histories help archaeologists better understand the mute remains of small coastal sites. I illustrate case studies from Mycenaean Greece, Cyprus, Ireland, ancient South India, and the Maya world. My aim is to show the role that small coastal communities played in local-scale maritime and terrestrial networks, which in turn were embedded in networks at regional and international scales.
Short bibliography and/or website on lecture topic:
McKillop, H. 2019. Maya Salt Works. Gainesville: University Press of Florida.
Mylona, D. 2020. “Marine Resources and Coastal Communities in the Late Bronze Age Southern Aegean: A Seascape Approach,” American Journal of Archaeology 124: 179–213.
Synge, J. M. 2008 . The Arran Islands. London: Serif.
Tartaron, T. F. 2013. Maritime Networks in the Mycenaean World. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.