Ancient Crete: From Successful Collapse to Democracy's Alternatives, Twelfth-Fifth Centuries BC

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9780521112048: Ancient Crete: From Successful Collapse to Democracy's Alternatives, Twelfth-Fifth Centuries BC

'Ancient Greece' with its associations of city states, democratic governance, and iconic material culture, can no longer be envisaged as a uniform geographical or historical entity. The Classical city-states of Crete differed considerably in culture, history and governance from those of central Greece. In this book, Saro Wallace reaches back into Crete's prehistory, covering the latest Bronze Age through the Archaic periods, to find out why. It emphasizes the roles of landscape, external contacts, social identity construction and historical consciousness in producing this difference, bringing together the wealth of new archaeological evidence available from the island with a variety of ancient text sources to produce a vivid and up-to-date picture of this momentous period in Crete's history.

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Book Description:

In this book, Saro Wallace examines Crete's prehistory, from the Late Bronze Age through the Archaic Period, to find out why the classical city states of Crete differed considerably in culture, history, and governance from those of central Greece. Her study emphasizes the roles that landscape, external contacts, social identity construction, and historical consciousness played in Crete's distinctive development. Highlighting thematic issues such as agency and contingency in state formation and collapse, Wallace analyses a range of new archaeological data that throws fresh interpretative light on ancient textual sources about the island.

About the Author:

Saro Wallace is Lecturer in Mediterranean Archaeology at the University of Reading. A recipient of a Leverhulme Postdoctoral Research Fellowship and regular grants from the British Academy and Institute for Aegean Prehistory, she has published many papers and reviews in the field of Bronze to Iron Age Greece. She currently directs excavations at the Late Bronze-Early Iron Age mountaintop site of Karfi, Crete.

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