From Finds to People: Imagining the Past


Course Objective

Archaeological skills:
This course aims to explore what it takes to reconstruct a
scientifically sound, coherent image of a society of the past. At the
end of the course, it must be evident that – in order to make such a
reconstruction – you should be able to:
- examine a variety of archaeological and other relevant sources;
- evaluate complex archaeological datasets, using theoretical and
general archaeological literature;
- assemble different types of information together to arrive at a
coherent picture of a past community that meets academic standards.
When you successfully complete this course, you will also be able to
explain what role cult played in key socio-political developments during
the Late Bronze Age and Early Iron Age in the Greek world.

In addition to this, this course seeks to hone the development of more
general, transferable skills through collaboration in a Wiki
environment. By learning how to work together and individually on a
group research project in a wiki, at the end of this course you are able
- design a collaborative piece of writing with peers on an online media
- give and receive feedback on individual and group work;
- act independently and take personal responsibility for your work.

Course Content

Subject: Continuity of Cult Practices in Late Bronze and Early Iron Age
Greece (ca. 1250-700 BC)

The basis of all archaeological research is formed by material remains
from the past. However, archaeology is more than just digging up things
from the ground. The creation of knowledge of the archaeological past
also involves a next step: ideally, archaeologists try to extract from
these material remains information about the society in question, for
example about its social organization, economy, cult and religion etc.
In short, archaeologists try to create an image of the past that is
internally consistent and based on solid scientific evidence. The
creation of meaningful, scientifically sound images of the past is also
one of the core elements of archaeological training and research at our
university. Central in the current seminar is the question of how we
‘imagine the past’. We will explore this issue by focusing on possible
instances of cult continuity between the Bronze Age and the Early Iron
Age. We will use primary data from a number of sites dispersed over the
Aegean, but also theoretical, anthropological and historical models, in
order to try to reconstruct a coherent image of how elements of Bronze
Age cult could have survived the collapse around 1200 BC and could be
adopted by new cult communities in the later part of the 8th century BC.
For this seminar we will use a wiki-type of website that enables us to
ideas, share, discuss, modify and manage content, and compose a
multifaceted image of a past community. We will use all what wiki has to
offer, including text, images, hyperlinks, annotation and so on. We will
work together as a community of editors and contributors to write
documents collaboratively, but there is also room for individual
approaches and viewpoints.

Teaching Methods


Method of Assessment

Individual and group contributions to a shared wiki-type of website.

Entry Requirements

Bachelor in Archaeology or Ancient Studies.


Will be made available during the course.

Target Audience

Master students of Archaeology and Classics and Ancient Civilizations
(specialization Ancient Studies).

General Information

Course Code L_BMMAARC013
Credits 6 EC
Period P4
Course Level 400
Language of Tuition English
Faculty Faculty of Humanities
Course Coordinator prof. dr. J.P. Crielaard
Examiner prof. dr. J.P. Crielaard
Teaching Staff prof. dr. J.P. Crielaard

Practical Information

You need to register for this course yourself

Last-minute registration is available for this course.

Teaching Methods Seminar
Target audiences

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