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Eurasian Lectures in German Archaeological Institute

Dr. Valentina Mordvintseva gave a lecture ‘The Sarmatian Archaeological Culture: The Network Model vs. Speculative’ in a series of on‑line lectures of the Eurasian Department of German Archaeological Institute.

Eurasian Lectures in German Archaeological Institute

In 1920s, the archaeological culture was defined as “a complex of regularly associated traits” such as “pots, implements, ornaments, burial rites, house forms — constantly recurring together” (Childe 1929, v‑vi). It was also assumed that “such a complex is the material expression of what would today be called a ‘people’” (i.e., archaeological culture=ethnographic complex). This view is regarded today as speculative, however, it is still used for by the interpretation of Sarmatian archaeological culture.

As a possible alternative, Dr. Mordvintseva has proposed a network model of archaeological culture. According to this model, an archaeological culture is a stable set of objects and phenomena of the material world, reflecting various network connections that have been formed and functioned in a particular area during a specific period of time. Actual archaeological remains are part of objective reality, while their association into the archaeological culture is a research tool and depends on the goals that the researcher, consciously or unconsciously, sets when it is selected. Samples of possible specific approaches were shown during the lecture.

After the lecture, a discussion took place, which was attended by Prof.Dr. Sven Hansen, Dr. Anatolij Nagler, Prof. Dr. Victor Cojocaru, Dr. Lavinia Grumesa, Dr. Sabina Reinhold, Prof. Dr. Joni Apakidze et alii.

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