CFP: Networks of Dominance (Session at TAG 2014, Manchester, UK) — Deadline October 17, 2014


TAG 2014, 15th-17th December, Manchester, UK

We invite contributions for the following session confirmed for the Theoretical Archaeology Group conference 2014.  We are seeking 20-minute presentations with no restriction on period or region.  Please send abstracts of no more than 300 words along with your name, affiliation and contact details to and by  Friday the 17th of October 2014.


**Networks of dominance – Aspects of inclusion and exclusion in archaeological approaches to social connectivity**

Organisers: Kathrin Felder (University of Cambridge), Dr Toby Martin (University of Oxford)

Recent theoretical work on the nature of human-object relationships increasingly informs the study of past social networks. As a consequence, archaeology is embracing the view that studying past human connectivity is not just a matter of reconstructing the static material traces of social networks but an attempt to understand how people and objects interacted in a dynamic fashion to physically and mentally furnish the fabric of human society.

Networks can be used in the pursuit and maintenance of social dominance through strategies of inclusion and exclusion. Simultaneously, networks of dominance can be resisted, contested or transformed through intentional non-participation or counter-activities. Such strategies are performed in arenas that are inescapably material, including access to (or prohibition from) objects circulated in exchange networks, or intentional segregation in the built and natural environment.

We are interested in the archaeological study of such social and material strategies in the formation, maintenance and disintegration of networks and invite papers (20 minutes) from various fields of archaeological and interdisciplinary research that deal with, but need not be limited to, the following themes:

• Strategies of dominance through networks, their successes and failures
• Socio-material practices of networking (trade, gift exchange etc.) and material culture as a means of enabling dominance
• The biographies of networks of dominance
• Forms of participation and non-participation and their intended and non-intended consequences
• Inclusion and exclusion by access to (or prohibition from) specific material culture
• Methodological approaches to inclusion and exclusion in the study of human connectivity, including formal network-analytical approaches

Please forward to anyone who may be interested.