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Friday, March 28, 2014

Writing as Material Practice: Substance, surface and medium

Writing as Material Practice: Substance, surface and medium
Authors --- 
ISBN9781909188242 9781909188259 9781909188266 Year Pages342 DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.5334/bai Language: English
PublisherUbiquity Press ]u[
SubjectEthnology --- History --- Archaeology 

Writing as Material Practice grapples with the issue of writing as a form of material culture in its ancient and more recent manifestations, and in the contexts of production and consumption. Fifteen case studies explore the artefactual nature of writing — the ways in which materials, techniques, colour, scale, orientation and visibility inform the creation of inscribed objects and spaces, as well as structure subsequent engagement, perception and meaning making. Covering a temporal span of some 5000 years, from c.3200 BCE to the present day, and ranging in spatial context from the Americas to the Near East, the chapters in this volume bring a variety of perspectives which contribute to both specific and broader questions of writing materialities. The authors also aim to place past graphical systems in their social contexts so they can be understood in relation to the people who created and attributed meaning to writing and associated symbolic modes through a diverse array of individual and wider social practices.

About the Editors
Kathryn E. Piquette recently completed a Marie Curie COFUND Fellow at Freie Universität Berlin and is also a Research Associate at Universät zu Köln. She obtained her PhD in Egyptology from University College London. Her research focusses on the early Egyptian and Near Eastern writing and art and advanced digital imaging technologies for ancient documentary evidence.

Ruth D. Whitehouse is Emeritus Professor of Prehistoric Archaeology at the Institute of Archaeology, University College London. Her research interests have focussed on the prehistory of Italy and the West Mediterranean, concentrating on social archaeology, ritual and religion. Other research interests include gender archaeology and the early writing systems of Italy.
 Acknowledgements iii
Contributors v
Abstracts ix
Chapter 1. Introduction: Developing an approach to writing as material practice
(Kathryn E. Piquette and Ruth D. Whitehouse)… 1
Chapter 2. The Twisting Paths of Recall: Khipu (Andean cord notation) as artifact
(Frank Salomon) ...15
Chapter 3. Writing as Material Technology: Orientation within landscapes of the Classic
Maya world (Sarah E. Jackson) … 45
Chapter 4. Writing (and Reading) as Material Practice: The world of cuneiform culture
as an arena for investigation (Roger Matthews) … 65
Chapter 5. Re-writing the Script: Decoding the textual experience in the Bronze Age
Levant (c .2000–1150 bc) (Rachael Thyrza Sparks) … 75
Chapter 6. The Function and Meaning of Writing in the Prehistoric Aegean: Some
reflections on the social and symbolic significance of writing from a material
perspective (Helène Whittaker) … 105
Chapter 7. Form Follows Function: Writing and its supports in the Aegean Bronze Age
(Sarah Finlayson) … 123
Chapter 8. Materiality of Minoan Writing: Modes of display and perception
(Georgia Flouda) … 143
Chapter 9. Saving on Clay: The Linear B practice of cutting tablets (Helena Tomas) ...175
Chapter 10. Straight, Crooked and Joined-up Writing: An early Mediterranean view
(Alan Johnston) … 193
Chapter 11. “It Is Written”?: Making, remaking and unmaking early ‘writing’ in the lower
Nile Valley (Kathryn E. Piquette) … 213
Chapter 12. Written Greek but Drawn Egyptian: Script changes in a bilingual dream
papyrus (Stephen Kidd) … 239
ii Writing as Material Practice
 Chapter 13. The Other Writing: Iconic literacy and Situla Art in pre-Roman Veneto (Italy)
(Elisa Perego) … 253
Chapter 14. ‘Tombstones’ in the North Italian Iron Age: Careless writers or
athletic readers? (Ruth D. Whitehouse) … 271
Chapter 15. Different Times, Different Materials and Different Purposes: Writing on
objects at the Grand Arcade site in Cambridge (Craig Cessford) … 289
Chapter 16. Writing Conservation: The impact of text on conservation decisions
and practice (Elizabeth Pye) … 319
Chapter 17. Epilogue (John Bennet) … 335