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Megaliths on the edge: The Place of Cultural Transformation

AuthorsHigginbottom, Gail; Díaz-Guardamino, Marta; Tejedor-Rodríguez, Cristina
KeywordsMegaliths Monuments
Issue DateAug-2020
Citation26th Virtual Annual Meeting of the European Association of Archaeologists (2020)
AbstractThis session wishes to address approaches and interpretations that determine understandings and values that may have been shared within the greater Megalithic tradition of Europe’s Atlantic coastline. Whilst the building of megalithic monuments, which includes stone tombs, standing stones and megalithic buildings, is a worldwide, time-transcending phenomenon, hundreds of thousands were erected across Europe, and thousands of these monuments still exist in situ, highlighting their past and continued relevance in the European Landscape. Significantly in Europe, it appears that most of them were built in the coastal regions where they altered natural places enduringly, with new constructions continuing for more than 2000 years. Despite possible forms of cultural continuity or similarities of community practices, from the times before and after the first appearance of megaliths, the megalithic tradition is often seen by archaeologists as a phenomenal cultural transformation. This transformation has been variously interpreted as sets of conversions, acculturations, absorptions and movements, or a series of all these, differing in temporality and location. Perhaps they were even part of some kind of cultural revolution. Interestingly, it seems that the point of commonality in this transformation may often have been the movement to, across or away from water. Our question in this session is: exactly what role did the Atlantic itself play in these transformations? This can be interpreted literally or figuratively. We want to know what can you tell us about the people and places you are studying in relation to the Atlantic just prior to, during or after the adoption of megaliths? Your research ´place´ could even be just next door but the adoption didn´t actually happen. Can you tell us why? Our session will focus on looking at ways of understanding the cultural topographies and transformations of people, places or regions by innovative research approaches – methodological and interpretive, or indeed have inspiring conclusions.
DescriptionTrabajo presentado en la 26th Virtual Annual Meeting of the European Association of Archaeologists (EEA), celebrada del 24 al 30 de agosto de 2020.
Appears in Collections:(INCIPIT) Comunicaciones congresos
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