Values and Revaluations: The Transformation and Genesis of 'Values in Things' from Archaeological and Anthropological Perspectives [Paperback]

Hans Peter Hahn (Editor); Anja Klöckner (Editor); Dirk Wicke (Editor)

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ISBN: 9781789258134 | Published by: Oxbow Books | Publication: March 2022 | Language: English 256p, H240 x W170 (mm) B/w
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Values and Revaluations

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Why are some things valuable while others are not? How much effort does it take to produce valuable objects? How can one explain the different appraisal of certain things in different temporal horizons and in different cultures? Cultural processes on how value is attached to things, and how value is re-established, are still little understood.

The case studies in this volume, originating from anthropology and archaeology, provide innovative and differentiated answers to these questions. However, for all contributions there are some common basic assumptions. One of these concerns the understanding that it is rarely the value of the material itself that matters for high valuation, but rather the appreciation of the (assumed or constructed) origin of certain objects or their connection with certain social structures. A second of these shared insights addresses the ubiquity of phenomena of 'value in things'. There is no society without valued objects. As a rule, valuation is something negotiated or even disputed. Value arises through social action, whereby it is always necessary to ask anew which actors are interested in the value of certain objects (or in their appreciation). This also works the other way round: Who are those actors who question corresponding objective values and why?

Table of Contents

List of contributors
Preface
 
1. Introduction to Part I: Values and value: Some approaches to the concept of ‘values in things’
Hans Peter Hahn
2. Learning new styles, quickly: an examination of the Mittani–middle Assyrian transition in material culture
Federico Buccellati
3. Changing exchange values in Solomon Islands
Ben Burt
4. Objects with (a) history: Observations on reworking and re-using ancient bronzes
Norbert Franken
5. The value of things: Textiles in the Iron Age
Susanna Harris
6. Negotiating the value of ethnographic cultural heritage: Between scholarship, entertainment, sentimentality and nationalism
Ivan Maksimovic
7. The gift as an open question
Guido Sprenger
8. Introduction to Part II: Re-evaluations
Anja Klöckner and Dirk Wicke
9. Recycling Egypt? The phenomenon of secondary re-use of Egyptian imports in the Northern Levant during the second millennium BCE
Alexander Ahrens
10. Beyond the Bones. Relics in Greek Temples
Andreas Hartmann
11. The ‘Altar of the Emperors’ from Carnuntum
Gabrielle Kremer
12. How do materials matter?
Lucy Norris
13. From antiquities to art: Why has classical archaeology ignored Marcel Duchamp?
James Whitley
14. When secondary is primary: On Halbzeug and other objects of continual re-evaluation
Thomas Widlok

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