Skip to main content Accessibility help

Towns and cities. A commentary on ‘performing towns’

  • Monica L. Smith

In this paper, Axel Christophersen does three important things. First, he addresses the way in which the inhabitants of premodern cities created an urban ethos through their cumulative daily actions. Second, he provides the opportunity to address a long-standing definitional challenge in the study of cities by examining what it means to undergo a process of ‘urbanization’. Finally, he focuses our attention on medieval Scandinavia as a region that has had a considerable amount of archaeological research but with which many readers may not be familiar compared to other historical periods in Europe.

Corresponding author
*Monica L. Smith, Department of Anthropology, UCLA, Los Angeles, USA. Email:
Hide All
Benefiel, R.R., 2010: Dialogues of ancient graffiti in the House of Maius Castricius in Pompeii, American journal of archaeology 114 (1), 59101.
Boutin, A., 2012: Crafting a bioarchaeology of personhood. Osteobiographical narratives from Alalakh, in Baadsgaard, A., Boutin, A.T. and Buikstra, J.E. (eds), Breathing new life into the evidence of death. Contemporary approaches to bioarchaeology, Santa Fe, 109–33.
Chelliah, J.V. (tr.), 1985: Pattupattu: Ten Tamil idylls, Thanjavur.
Clarke, H., and Ambrosiani, B. (eds), 1995: Towns in the Viking Age, revised edn, London.
Deetz, J., 1977: In small things forgotten, New York.
Inomata, T., and Coben, L.S., 2006: An invitation to the archaeological theater, in Inomata, T. and Coben, L.S. (eds), Archaeology of performance. Theaters of power, community, and politics, Lanham, MD, 1144.
Iversen, F., 2015: Community and society. The thing at the edge of Europe, Journal of the North Atlantic S8, 117.
Mohanty, R.K., Smith, M.L. and Matney, T., 2014: Excavations and geophysical survey at the ancient early historic town of Talapada, Odisha 2013, Man and environment 39 (2), 5363.
Neitzel, J.E. (ed.), 1999: Great towns and regional polities in the prehistoric American Southwest and Southeast, Albuquerque.
Smith, M.L., 2003: Introduction. The social construction of ancient cities, in Smith, M.L. (ed.), The social construction of ancient cities, Washington, DC, 136.
Tol, G., de Haas, T., Armstrong, K. and Attema, P., 2014: Minor centres in the Pontine Plain. The Cases of Forum Appii and Ad Medias, Papers of the British School at Rome 82, 109–34.
Tringham, R.E., 1991: Households with faces. The challenge of gender in prehistoric archaeological remains, in Gero, J.M. and Conkey, M.W. (eds), Engendering archaeology, Oxford, 93131.
Ur, J., 2012: Southern Mesopotamia, in Potts, D.T. (ed.), A companion to the archaeology of the ancient Near East, Hoboken, 533–55.
Recommend this journal

Email your librarian or administrator to recommend adding this journal to your organisation's collection.

Archaeological Dialogues
  • ISSN: 1380-2038
  • EISSN: 1478-2294
  • URL: /core/journals/archaeological-dialogues
Please enter your name
Please enter a valid email address
Who would you like to send this to? *


Full text views

Total number of HTML views: 0
Total number of PDF views: 0 *
Loading metrics...

Abstract views

Total abstract views: 0 *
Loading metrics...

* Views captured on Cambridge Core between <date>. This data will be updated every 24 hours.

Usage data cannot currently be displayed