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The materiality of the ancient dead: Post-burial practices and ontologies of death in southern sweden AD 800–1200
Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Archaeology and Classical Studies.
2016 (English)In: Current Swedish Archaeology, ISSN 1102-7355, Vol. 24, 137-162 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

This text discusses reuse and modications of older graves in southern Sweden during the Late Iron Age and early medieval period (c. 9th to 12th centuries AD). Post-burial practices in the Late Iron Age have in general been interpreted as means to negotiate status, identity and rights to land, while in the later part of the period they are comprehended as expressions of religious insecurity and syncretism. In this text, the continuity of post-burial practices during the whole period is stressed and instead of general top-down interpretative models, the ontological status and material aspects of death, dead bodies and their graves is emphasized. It is argued that the post-burial actions generally constituted ways of relating to a specific type of materiality, the bones of the ancient dead, which transgress binary categorizations such as living–dead, past–present, heathen–Christian, and human–nonhuman. The argument builds on recently excavated sites in southern Sweden: Bogla, Broby Bro, Lilla Ullevi, Valsta and Vittene.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2016. Vol. 24, 137-162 p.
Keyword [en]
reuse, post-burial practices, Iron Age, burials, materiality, perspectivism
National Category
Archaeology
Research subject
Archaeology
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-136537OAI: oai:DiVA.org:su-136537DiVA: diva2:1062660
Available from: 2017-01-07 Created: 2016-12-10 Last updated: 2017-08-23Bibliographically approved

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