Transnational perspectives on the legacy of ancient pasts in contemporary Europe

Organisers: Chiara Bonacchi (University College London, UK), Richard Hingley (Durham University, UK), Stasa Babic (Filozofski fakultet Beograd, Serbia), Catalin Popa (Leiden University, the Netherlands).

This session aims to bring together researchers involved in interdisciplinary studies examining the contemporary heritages of Iron Age, Roman and Early Medieval pasts in Europe. It will present and discuss the regional variability of the methodological approaches that have been adopted and the results achieved so far. In inviting contributions, we embrace a broad understanding of heritage as the ‘uses, values and associations’ carried by the historic environment for different stakeholders (Smith and Waterton, 2012:1). This is a meaning of heritage that transcends ‘authorised heritage discourses’ and acknowledges the stakes of a wide range of individuals and groups (Smith and Waterton, 2012:2). Questions that we would like to ask are: how are different materials and ideas relating to Iron Age, Roman and Early Medieval pasts lived, enacted, and interpreted across European territories? What regional commonalities or specificities can be identified in the ways in which heritage values are shaped, and emerge from different contexts of production and consumption? What is the contemporary legacy of historical structures which cut across the roughly 1,000 years between 700BC and AD800? How have these contributed to place-making and identity trans(formation)s that are visible today? What has been the impact of formal archaeological practices and the role of archaeologists in these processes?

Together with the organisers, the following have already showed an interest in participating: Kate Sharpe (Durham, UK), Manuel Fernandez-Gotz (Edinburgh, UK), Andrew Gardner (UCL, UK), Frank Siegmund (Heinrich Heine University Düsseldorf, Germany), Tina Paphitis (UCL, UK), Andrea Biondi (University of Florence).