Place Making and Ephemerality

Author(s): Joshua Wright

Year: 2019


This is an abstract from the "Crafting Culture: Thingselves, Contexts, Meanings" session, at the 84th annual meeting of the Society for American Archaeology.

At first the two ideas of this paper’s title can seem contradictory, but as three separate words they come together. What is the valency between the hypothesised solidity of an archaeological place and the stream of events that go into making it, transforming it, and erasing it? The ephemeral nature of the archaeological sites created by mobile communities is often the first thing that is said of them and after that comes a long chain of strictures limiting what interpretations are possible. Here I propose a more positive outlook. Using case studies from the Eurasian steppe this paper will search for seemingly ephemeral places and find them as assemblages of many materials. Of primary interest to this discussion will be more mobile subjects ranging from sheep to metals and less mobile ones like stone or drainages. The subject here is not site location models, but an exploration of how places are crafted by the knowledge and action of many actors both ancient and modern.

Cite this Record

Place Making and Ephemerality. Joshua Wright. Presented at The 84th Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, Albuquerque, NM. 2019 ( tDAR id: 450995)


Geographic Keywords
Asia: Central Asia

Spatial Coverage

min long: 46.143; min lat: 28.768 ; max long: 87.627; max lat: 54.877 ;

Record Identifiers

Abstract Id(s): 22872