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Friday, April 1 • 11:20 - 11:45
S03-07 Discussion

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A Space and Time Analysis of the Early Bronze Age Levantine Littoral

Crystal Safadi

Maritime spaces are endowed with a set of natural characteristics acting upon and beneath the water surface. They foster a home for the movement of winds, of water, of ships, and of people. Movement through these spaces is a function of a complex system of interaction between humans, the environment, and humans’ perception of the environment. Yet Maritime spaces are not present in isolation or within demarcations. In fact, land and sea seamlessly merge shaping waterfronts and shores marked by human activities. The importance of these coastlines and their imbued heritage, is well paramount in maritime cultural landscapes studies. They form a substantial heritage record, a place of archaeological signature, and specialization. However, though our knowledge of maritime spaces is growing, much of their potential and affordances remain concealed. Through reconstructing, testing, and analysing, experimentally or digitally, we can reach a step closer to lived maritime spaces. 
The Early Bronze Age (EBA) in the Levant is recognised for marking the first urban period in the southern Levant, and the ‘second urban revolution’ in the northern Levant. It is characterised by significant changes, primarily a shift from village-like communities towards an urban mode of life. The Levantine littoral, particularly in the north, is known to have played a major role during the mid-third millennium, when maritime connections mainly with Egypt became vital. This has been considered one of the instigators of urban development. However, numerous hypotheses have attempted to explain the rise of social complexity and urbanism, yet most of these failed to consider the totality of the space over which change is occurring, and appraise the Levantine littoral in its full potentiality, as a seamless space of sea and land. This paper aims to study and analyse the littoral Levant during the EBA as a space of affordances, accessibility, and connectivity. It builds on a time-space analysis of traveling by sea and by land, and attempts to move beyond the representation of space towards spaces of representations which incorporates at its foundation social activities.

Friday April 1, 2016 11:20 - 11:45 CEST
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