Comparative Social Inequality and Class Structure in Ancient Cities

Author(s): Jacqueline Fox

Year: 2015


Using the Gini index and associated Lorenz curve, ancient cities dispersed throughout several cultural areas and representing varied temporal periods will be compared by a representative measurement of wealth. Using residential house size in several sites where the complete extent of the residences are mapped, calculated area and volume will be used as the standard for comparison. The volume of each structure is a more representative measurement of wealth because it encompasses the cost of labor more appropriately, however the limited number of sites with this level of detailed measurement available may not allow for as wide a sample. Area will also be measured in order to have a larger sample from which to derive conclusions. The comparison of these calculations with the Gini index will provide a new insight into variable levels of inequality with a consistent measurement that can be correlated with specific contexts to provide new insight into site variation within culture areas as well as variation between culture areas.

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Comparative Social Inequality and Class Structure in Ancient Cities. Jacqueline Fox. Presented at The 80th Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, San Francisco, California. 2015 ( tDAR id: 398194)

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