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The Construction of Value

by Evangeline last modified October 03, 2013 11:00 AM

The Construction of Value

Edited by John K. Papadopoulos and Gary Urton

Construction of Value

ISBN: 978-1-931745-90-1

Publication Date: October 2012

Series: Cotsen Advanced Seminar 5

Price: $65.00

Buy this book! Order from the University of New Mexico Press.

Scholars from Aristotle to Marx and beyond have been fascinated by the question of what constitutes value. The Construction of Value in the Ancient World makes a significant contribution to this ongoing inquiry, bringing together in one comprehensive volume the perspectives of leading anthropologists, archaeologists, historians, linguists, philologists, and sociologists on how value was created, defined, and expressed in a number of ancient societies around the world. Based on the basic premise that value is a social construct defined by the cultural context in which it is situated, the volume explores four overarching but closely interrelated themes: place value, body value, object value, and number value. The questions raised and addressed are of central importance to archaeologists studying ancient civilizations: How can we understand the value that might have been accorded to materials, objects, people, places, and patterns of action by those who produced or used the things that compose the human material record? Taken as a whole, the contributions to this volume demonstrate how the concept of value lies at the intersection of individual and collective tastes, desires, sentiments, and attitudes that inform the ways people select, or give priority to, one thing over another.



Table of Contents

Part I: Place Value

  • Chapter 1 - Significant stones, significant places: monumentality and landscapes in Neolithic western Europe by Chris Scarre
  • Chapter 2 - The negotiation of place-value in the landscape by John Chapman
  • Chapter 3 - Spare values: the decision not to destroy by Susan E. Alcock
  • Chapter 4 - Emplacing value, cultivating order: places of conversion and practices of subordination throughout early Inka state formation (Cusco, Perú) by Steven Kosiba
  • Chapter 5 - The revaluation of landscapes in the Inca Empire as Peircean replication by Charles Stanish

Part II: Body Value

  • Chapter 6 - Objectifying the body: the increased value of the ancient Egyptian mummy during the socioeconomic crisis of Dynasty 21 by Kathlyn M. Cooney
  • Chapter 7 - From value to meaning, from things to persons: the grave circles of Mycenae reconsidered by Sofia Voutsaki
  • Chapter 8 - Dressing the body in splendor: expression of value by the Moche of ancient Peru by Christopher B. Donnan
  • Chapter 9 - Interpreting the Paracas body and its value in ancient Peru by Lisa DeLeonardis
  • Chapter 10 - The value of chorality in ancient Greece by Leslie Kurke
  • Chapter 11 - Bodies and their values in the early Medieval West by Patrick J. Geary

Part III: Object Value

  • Chapter 12 - Systems of value among material things: the nexus of fungibility and measure by Colin Renfrew
  • Chapter 13 - Money, art, and the construction of value in the ancient Mediterranean by John K. Papadopoulos
  • Chapter 14 - The construction of values during the Peruvian Formative by Richard L. Burger
  • Chapter 15 - Bronze, jade, gold, and ivory: valuable objects in ancient Sichuan by Rowan Flad
  • Chapter 16 - The value of aesthetic value by James I. Porter
  • Chapter 17 - Light and the precious object, or value in the eyes of the Byzantines by Ioli Kalavrezou
  • Chapter 18 - Figurine fashions in formative Mesoamerica by Richard G. Lesure
  • Chapter 19 - From rational to relational: re-configuring value in the Inca Empire by Tamara Bray
  • Chapter 20 - Competing and commensurate values in colonial conditions: how they are expressed and registered in the sixteenth-century Andes by Tom Cummins

Part IV: Number Value

  • Chapter 21 - Equivalency values and the command economy of the Ur III period in Mesopotamia by Robert K. Englund
  • Chapter 22 - Constructing Value with Instruments versus Constructing Equivalence with Mathematics: Measuring Grains According to Early Chinese Mathematical Sources by Karine Chemla
  • Chapter 23 - Recording values in the Inka Empire by Gary Urton
  • Chapter 24 - The varieties of ancient Maya numeration and value by David Stuart
  • Chapter 25 - Calculative objects: sustaining symbolic systems in the ancient Mediterranean by Melissa A. Bailey
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