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Karia and Krete: a study in social and cultural interaction

Carless Unwin, NH; (2013) Karia and Krete: a study in social and cultural interaction. Doctoral thesis (PhD), UCL (University College London). Green open access

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Abstract

My thesis focuses on social and cultural interaction between Karia (in south western Anatolia) and Krete, over a long time span; from the Bronze Age to the Roman period. A persistent tradition existed in antiquity linking the Karians with Krete; this was mirrored in civic mythologies in Karia, as well as in cults and toponyms. My research aims to construct a new framework in which to read these traditions. The way in which a community ‘remembered’ its past was not an objective view of history; traditions were transmitted because they were considered to reflect something about a society. The persistence of a Kretan link within Karian mythologies and cults indicates that Krete was ‘good to think with’ even (or especially) during a period when Karia itself was undergoing changes (becoming, in a sense, both ‘de-Karianized’ and ‘Hellenized’). I focus on the late Classical and Hellenistic periods, from which most of our source material derives. The relevance of a shared past is considered in light of actual contacts between the two regions: diplomatic, economic, cultural and military. Against the prevailing orthodoxy, which maintains that traditions of earlier contacts, affinities and kinship between peoples from different parts of the Mediterranean were largely constructs of later periods, I take seriously the origins of such traditions and explore how the networks that linked Minoan Krete with Anatolia could have left a residuum in later conceptualisations of regional history. That I am able to do so is mainly thanks to developments in recent archaeological and linguistic research into Bronze Age western Anatolia. Such a diachronic approach throws up obvious questions of methodology: one cannot draw straight lines between the late Bronze age and the second century BC, and so must develop a way of analysing how, and in which contexts, traditions survived.

Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Qualification: PhD
Title: Karia and Krete: a study in social and cultural interaction
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
Language: English
UCL classification: UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH > Faculty of S&HS > Dept of History
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/1383786
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