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Tracking the social lives of things: biographical insights into Bronze Age pottery in Spain

  • Antonio Blanco-González (a1)

Pottery has sometimes been compared to a living organism in its cycle of birth, life and death or discard. A biographical approach to an unusual assemblage of pottery from the Late Bronze Age site of Pico Castro in central Spain suggests that they had been used together at a communal feast. The shared social memory that they acquired thereby conferred on them a special status that resulted in their eventual placement in the pit, fine wares and coarse wares together. Thus the varied biographies of the individual vessels—and the individual sherds—eventually converged not only in their discard but in the episodes that preceded it.

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