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Soil Microstratigraphy: Understanding How Archaeological Sites Are Built

Event Details:

  • Date: Thursday 25th May 2017
  • Time: 16:00 - 17:00
  • Venue: The Cyprus Institute – Guy Ourisson Building, Seminar Room, 1st Floor, Athalassa Campus
  • Speaker: Dr. Panagiotis Karkanas, Director, Wiener Laboratory, American School of Classical Studies at Athens
*The colloquium will be in English, the event is open to the public, light refreshments will be served after the talk.

Abstract 
For interpreting site history it is imperative to understand how the building blocks of stratigraphy, the archaeological deposits, have been formed. The micromorphological approach, a microscopic contextual method, offers a fine-grained stratigraphic perspective for deciphering particular events in the biography of sites, as well as a means to understand how a site has been created.

This talk utilizes examples, particularly the ritual burning and maintenance practices of a hearth at the Archaic temple in Kalapodi, the backfilling and re-opening of the Mycenaean chamber tombs of Nemea, and the patterns of floor construction and maintenance in the Bronze Age site of Mitrou, to construct the ‘vertical history’ of ritual places, mortuaries, and settlements.

About the Speaker
p karkanas magnifyingDr. Panagiotis Karkanas is presently the Director of the Malcolm H. Wiener Laboratory for Archaeological Science in the American School of Classical Studies at Athens. For more than 20 years he served as senior geologists in the Ephorate of Palaeoanthropology-Speleology in the Antiquities Service of Greece. During 2004-2014 he was teaching the “Geoarchaeology” course as adjunct lecturer in the Department of Geography in the Harokopio University of Athens. He has served as Associate Editor for the “Journal of Human Evolution” and currently for the journal “Geoarchaeology” and in the editorial board of the “Encyclopedia of Geoarchaeology”.

In April 2017, he was elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. His research interests encompass all aspects of geoarchaeology including site-formation processes and palaeoenvironmental reconstructions. He has carried out geoarchaeological research in sites of almost all cultural periods and associated landscapes in Greece as well as in South Africa, China, Israel, France, Spain, Hungary, Albania and Cyprus.
He is author of one book (in Greek) and author or co-author of over 100 scientific papers in journals or chapters.

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This event is part of the CyI Colloquium Series.  View all CyI events.

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