Networks of Power: Sandstone Temple Production in the Provinces of the Angkorian Khmer Empire

Author(s): Kendall Hills

Year: 2018


Anthropological research suggests that early states and empires frequently relied on state-sponsored building projects to produce networks of state control and identity on the landscape. The production and use of monumental architecture, however, can also be influenced by local agency, resilience and/or resistance, and degrees of socio-political autonomy. Rather than a homogenous blanket of state/imperial power, the result is a mosaic of core state control and local choices across the landscape. Focusing on the Angkorian Khmer Empire (9th to 15th c. CE), this paper employs a landscape network approach to investigate degrees of state control and evidence of intermediate elite power, thus providing a more dynamic perspective of the imperial landscape. These investigations are informed through an analysis of the assemblage of provincial sandstone temples, which were key loci for the negotiation of state and intermediate elite power within the Khmer Empire. Emphasis is placed on understanding the geographic distribution of temples, the acquisition of sandstone for temple production, and temple form and organization, as variations in these variables may reflect different intermediate elite strategies and levels of agentive decision making.

Cite this Record

Networks of Power: Sandstone Temple Production in the Provinces of the Angkorian Khmer Empire. Kendall Hills. Presented at The 82nd Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, Washington, DC. 2018 ( tDAR id: 444430)

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Spatial Coverage

min long: 92.549; min lat: -11.351 ; max long: 141.328; max lat: 27.372 ;

Record Identifiers

Abstract Id(s): 20969