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Med kärret som källa : om begreppen offer och ritual inom arkeologin

Berggren, Åsa LU (2010) In Vägar till Midgård 13.
Abstract (Swedish)
Popular Abstract in Swedish

Varför lade människor ner stenar, ben och redskap i vatten och våtmarker under förhistorisk tid? Och hur kan arkeologin skapa förståelse för denna typ av lämningar? Vanligen tolkas de nedlagda föremålen som offer, men det är ett begrepp som är förknippat med en rad problem. Bland annat riskerar användningen av offerbegreppet att dölja olikheter och nyanser i människornas sätt att deponera föremål.

I Med kärret som källa använder arkeologen Åsa Berggren istället ett arbetssätt som sätter människorna, deras handlingar och ritualer i fokus. I boken tillämpar hon konsekvent ett handlingsteoretiskt perspektiv på ett neolitiskt fyndmaterial från ett kärr i Malmö. Här blir människornas sinnliga... (More)
Popular Abstract in Swedish

Varför lade människor ner stenar, ben och redskap i vatten och våtmarker under förhistorisk tid? Och hur kan arkeologin skapa förståelse för denna typ av lämningar? Vanligen tolkas de nedlagda föremålen som offer, men det är ett begrepp som är förknippat med en rad problem. Bland annat riskerar användningen av offerbegreppet att dölja olikheter och nyanser i människornas sätt att deponera föremål.

I Med kärret som källa använder arkeologen Åsa Berggren istället ett arbetssätt som sätter människorna, deras handlingar och ritualer i fokus. I boken tillämpar hon konsekvent ett handlingsteoretiskt perspektiv på ett neolitiskt fyndmaterial från ett kärr i Malmö. Här blir människornas sinnliga upplevelser av ting och platser centrala, och man kommer deras handlingar och upplevelser nära. Studien visar hur människorna genom sin användning av kärret skapat sina relationer till andra människor, sina sociala positioner och sin historia – ett socialt samspel som pågått under mer än 3 000 år. (Less)
Abstract
This thesis deals with questions concerning theoretical perspectives and archaeological interpretation. It is also a thesis about prehistoric wetland depositions, as they illustrate the discussion. The starting point of the study is the use of the concept of sacrifice (or offering) in Scandinavian archaeology. There are several assumptions, both explicit and implicit, that are considered problematic. The assumed universality of sacrifice is one example. In some cases artefacts deposited in wetlands are categorized as ritual deposits. The use of this term warrants an examination of the concept of ritual as well, and it too is associated with similar problems.



Instead of using the concept of sacrifice another approach is... (More)
This thesis deals with questions concerning theoretical perspectives and archaeological interpretation. It is also a thesis about prehistoric wetland depositions, as they illustrate the discussion. The starting point of the study is the use of the concept of sacrifice (or offering) in Scandinavian archaeology. There are several assumptions, both explicit and implicit, that are considered problematic. The assumed universality of sacrifice is one example. In some cases artefacts deposited in wetlands are categorized as ritual deposits. The use of this term warrants an examination of the concept of ritual as well, and it too is associated with similar problems.



Instead of using the concept of sacrifice another approach is proposed. In this study, practice theory, and especially the concept of ritualization, are used as a starting point. This means that the term sacrifice is not used as a category of interpretation. In fact, the question whether the material is sacrificed or not becomes irrelevant with this perspective. Instead alternative results that may complement or replace the sacrificial category are explored.



In short, the aim of this study is to apply practice theory to material deposited in wetland – traditionally interpreted as sacrifices – to enable an empirically informed discussion of archaeological interpretations and results. To achieve this aim the tools made available in practice theory are used, mainly the concepts of embodiment and objectification. The significance of the past in the past is also discussed.



The archaeological material from a fen at Hindbygården, Malmö, in south-west Scania in southern Sweden is mainly dated to a period covering more than three thousand years, from the Late Mesolithic to the Early Bronze Age. There were also a few later activities. The long period of use, along with its variation and complexity, makes this material well suited for this kind of study. An archaeobotanical study also enables a discussion of the role of the physical environment. The environment is important in this study, as the spatial structures were a part of what was created by the actions that took place at the fen, and the environment influenced the experience of the depositions. (Less)
Please use this url to cite or link to this publication:
author
supervisor
opponent
  • Fuglestvedt, Ingrid, Universitetet i Oslo
organization
publishing date
type
Thesis
publication status
published
subject
keywords
Stone Age, the past in the past, objectification, embodyment, ritualization, practice theory, sacrifice, archaeology, ritual, Malmö, Hindbygården, wetland depositions, Early Bronze Age
in
Vägar till Midgård
volume
13
pages
400 pages
publisher
Nordic Academic Press
defense location
Kulturens auditorium, Tegnérsplatsen, Lund
defense date
2010-10-01 10:15
ISSN
1650-5905
ISBN
978-91-89116-98-6
language
Swedish
LU publication?
yes
id
8d201418-2dff-44f8-bb3a-d38189bb1902 (old id 1662506)
date added to LUP
2010-09-03 16:33:28
date last changed
2018-05-29 12:28:22
@phdthesis{8d201418-2dff-44f8-bb3a-d38189bb1902,
  abstract     = {This thesis deals with questions concerning theoretical perspectives and archaeological interpretation. It is also a thesis about prehistoric wetland depositions, as they illustrate the discussion. The starting point of the study is the use of the concept of sacrifice (or offering) in Scandinavian archaeology. There are several assumptions, both explicit and implicit, that are considered problematic. The assumed universality of sacrifice is one example. In some cases artefacts deposited in wetlands are categorized as ritual deposits. The use of this term warrants an examination of the concept of ritual as well, and it too is associated with similar problems. <br/><br>
<br/><br>
Instead of using the concept of sacrifice another approach is proposed. In this study, practice theory, and especially the concept of ritualization, are used as a starting point. This means that the term sacrifice is not used as a category of interpretation. In fact, the question whether the material is sacrificed or not becomes irrelevant with this perspective. Instead alternative results that may complement or replace the sacrificial category are explored. <br/><br>
<br/><br>
In short, the aim of this study is to apply practice theory to material deposited in wetland – traditionally interpreted as sacrifices – to enable an empirically informed discussion of archaeological interpretations and results. To achieve this aim the tools made available in practice theory are used, mainly the concepts of embodiment and objectification. The significance of the past in the past is also discussed.<br/><br>
<br/><br>
The archaeological material from a fen at Hindbygården, Malmö, in south-west Scania in southern Sweden is mainly dated to a period covering more than three thousand years, from the Late Mesolithic to the Early Bronze Age. There were also a few later activities. The long period of use, along with its variation and complexity, makes this material well suited for this kind of study. An archaeobotanical study also enables a discussion of the role of the physical environment. The environment is important in this study, as the spatial structures were a part of what was created by the actions that took place at the fen, and the environment influenced the experience of the depositions.},
  author       = {Berggren, Åsa},
  isbn         = {978-91-89116-98-6},
  issn         = {1650-5905},
  keyword      = {Stone Age,the past in the past,objectification,embodyment,ritualization,practice theory,sacrifice,archaeology,ritual,Malmö,Hindbygården,wetland depositions,Early Bronze Age},
  language     = {swe},
  pages        = {400},
  publisher    = {Nordic Academic Press},
  school       = {Lund University},
  series       = {Vägar till Midgård},
  title        = {Med kärret som källa : om begreppen offer och ritual inom arkeologin},
  volume       = {13},
  year         = {2010},
}