Structuri sociale și identități etnice în epoca metalelor în sud-estul Europei
Social structures and ethnic identities in the metal age in South-eastern Europe
Keywords:social structures; social relations; prehistory; cultural changes; ethnic identity;
In the last decades there had been proposed several theoretical models for different types of exchanges, from those that took place among the neighboring communities to the long distances ones, through the help of the intermediaries. The mechanisms of the goods circulation, essentially different from what we understand today through this process, were based on the principles of reciprocity and redistribution. In order to understand them, and also other aspects related to the complex system of the social and power relations, an important role had the ethno-anthropological studies that offered different interpretation models. It was debated a lot in the Anglo-Saxon literature and not only, on the fact that the contemporary archaeologist judges, inevitably, the objects and the concrete situations from the digs, according to some criteria completely different from the studied cultural context, because he belongs to another “world”, with other psych-socio-cultural features than the people from the near past, this socio-social distance that comes between the archaeologist and the artifact, along with the temporal one, determining the opacity of the last one.
The archaeological data mustn’t permanently inter-relate with the theories. It isn’t always sure that these “stylistic” or “aesthetic” criteria that we consider to be significant were considered the same by the potter from the past. The “style” changes had been many times forcedly associated with the replacement of an archaeological culture with another or changes in the ethnic structure of a community. The changes that appeared in certain types of artifacts can be explained only through economic or symbolic mutations, not necessarily through cultural influences understood linearly (as the representation of some chronological relations between the human groups or through the ethnic relation).
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