Smith, Kevin P.. Regional archaeological research in Iceland: potentials and possibilities

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Title: Regional archaeological research in Iceland: potentials and possibilities

Published in: The Anthropology of Iceland, edited by E. Paul Durrenberger and Gísli Pálsson

Published By: The Anthropology of Iceland, edited by E. Paul Durrenberger and Gísli Pálsson Iowa City: University of Iowa Press, 1989. 179-202 p.

By line: Kevin P. Smith and Jeffrey R. Parsons

HRAF Publication Information: New Haven, Conn.: HRAF, 2004. Computer File

Culture: Early Icelanders (EQ02)

Subjects: Theoretical orientation in research and its results (121); Archaeological survey methods (129); Verbal arts (5310); Status, role, and prestige (554); Social relationships and groups (571); Districts (634);

Abstract: In this essay the authors discuss the role of regional archaeological studies as a means of investigating patterns of cultural change in Medieval Iceland during the period of 875-1550 A.D. Much of the ethnohistorical data in this work related to change is obtained primarily from the analysis of Icelandic political structure (e.g., the relationship between chieftains and their supporters and tenants), as derived from the various sagas written during this period. This document attempts to develop a framework for a simple model of cultural change focusing '...on relationships between household wealth, economic rank, and economic hierarchies that could be used to study patterning in the regional distribution of wealth and economic or political power. We [the authors] apply this preliminary model to agricultural census data from the eighteenth century rather than archaeological data in order to demonstrate the strengths of such an approach when applied to a known data base and to discuss implications for archaeoloigcal research' (p. 187).

Document Number: 8

Document ID: eq02-008

Document Type: Essay

Language: English

Note: Papers from a conference held in Iowa City, in May 1987.

Field Date: no date

Evaluation: Ethnologists-4

Analyst: John Beierle ; 2002

Coverage Date: 875-1550 A.D.

Coverage Place: Iceland

LCSH: Icelanders

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