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  • Simandiraki-Grimshaw A. 2015, The Body

    Brand and Minoan Zonation, Cappel S.,

    Gnkel-Maschek U., Panagiotopoulos D.

    (eds.), Minoan Archaeology: Perspectives for

    the 21st Century, UCL Presses universitaires

    de Louvain: 267 282.

  • 267

    The Body Brand and Minoan Zonation*

    Anna Simandiraki-Grimshaw

    The human body abounds in the inoan excavation record, from seals to frescoes to igurines to human remains. Nevertheless, it is usually approached mainly as an art object or as a collection of bones, and occupies the inter-

    pretational margins of inoan archaeology, with the exception of its role in religion or society. Few luminous exceptions have attempted to go beyond such constraints, into thematic territories such as gender and embodiment.

    This paper, based on the authors current research, advocates an integrated approach to the human body in the Cretan Bronze Age. According to this, the combination of diverse somatic datasets can reveal very interesting and hitherto neglected social and other patterns. ne such pattern, presented here, regards the role of the human body in the construction of geographical and perhaps social zones. In effect, a new way of looking at the human body in inoan Crete is proposed by using speciic examples.


    Research on the human body beyond its medical potential has progressively come into focus in the Humanities and Social Sciences in the later th and early 1st c. CE. The constellation of debates on the human body is already rich and has covered several topics. These have included gender,1 osteoarchaeology,2 identity,3 ethnog-raphy,4 visuality,5 the body in space,6 social conditioning and discipline,7 relativity of perception,8 sensoriality,9 fragmentation,10 religion,11 as well as wider approaches.12 Such already substantial and promising research has opened new horizons beyond previously established Western-centric, Cartesian bodily dualisms. However, inter-pretation in Aegean Bronze Age and inoan archaeology largely continues to underprivilege the human body. uminous exceptions paving the way for joining wider debates of corporeality, embodiment and agency include the work of e.g. Wedde,13 Morris,14 orris and Peatield,15 Goodison,16 Malafouris17 and Voutsaki18 on somatic coniguration, transience and agency Rehak,19 Alberti,20 Mina21 and Hitchcock22 on gender Adams23 and Preston24

    * I would like to thank irst of all the organisers of the conference, for their acceptance of my paper. I would additionally like to thank the Department of Classics, University of Cincinnati, whose argo Tytus Research Fellowship enabled me to access several relevant materials in . A previous version of this paper was delivered at the ycenaean Seminar in (see Simandiraki-Grimshaw 1c) I thank all colleagues who provided valuable feedback. Finally, I thank Fay Stevens, who, during one of our fruitful discus-sions, suggested I use the term zonation. 1 E.g. Cooey 14. 2 E.g. Sofaer .3 E.g. eskell 1, 1, , 1.4 E.g. Csordas 1.5 E.g. Gombrich 1, 11 Turner 1, .6 E.g. Turnbull .7 E.g. Bourdieu Fraser .8 E.g. erleau-Ponty .9 Hamilakis Shilling .10 E.g. Chapman Chapman and Gaydarska Fowler .11 Cooey 14.12 E.g. Bori and Robb Tarlow , 4 Fraser and Greco , 4.13 Wedde 1.14 orris 1, .15 orris and Peatield .16 Goodison 1, 4.17 Malafouris .18 Voutsaki 1.19 Rehak 1.20 E.g. Alberti 1, .21 Mina .22 Hitchcock 1.23 Adams 4.24 Preston 4a, 4b.

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    The Body Brand and Minoan Zonation

    on regionalism German25 on performativity etesson and Vansteenhuyse26 and Fox27 on perceptual and sensorial issues afplioti28 on biosocial conditions and especially Hamilakis29 on consumption and multimodal reconcep-tualisations.30

    In order to approach the inoan human body anew, we should collapse the distinction between human re-mains and representations.31 bjects (which may bear depicted bodies) can have their own cultural biographies,32 shifting agency and multi-sensorial affordances,33 as argued by e.g. Appadurai,34 Kopytoff,35 Hoskins,36 Sofaer,37 Hamilakis,38 Gosden and Marshall,39 Joy40 etc. bjects may have represented personages that we usually assume (e.g. a Snake Goddess), but they may also have been personages themselves, contra prevalent indexical interpre-tations.41 Artefacts could have served as extensions and shapers of the physical body, not just as tools, adornment, utilitarian objects etc.42 So, objects could have been subjects depicted bodies could have been treated as physical ones.

    Biological bodies, on the other hand, also had cultural biographies and shifting agency. Sofaer convincingly argues43 that the human body, made of chemicals itself just like an artefact, displays plasticity it can be altered and conditioned by materiality beyond its genetic predisposition.44 The use of an artefact has consequences for both it and the corresponding part of the biological body. Furthermore, biological bodies may also have been treated as objects, i.e. receptors of action, e.g. during disposal andor disarticulation.45 So, physical bodies could have been objects, although I would not necessarily treat biological and represented bodies as homologous.46 Instead, I want to highlight that the interface of physical body and artefact was not necessarily a distinguishing boundary, as the body is the nexus between biology and culture.47 To take this further, as each person was a unique constellation of dimensions of difference and networks of sociability, it is the very relationality of hisher existence that became the foundation of hisher agency.48

    For the purposes of my argument, I take the human body to mean not only the skin containing organs, muscles, bones etc. or the materially inite bodily depiction, but also the socially constructed aspects which may extend it or reshape it despite its biological or artefactual boundaries.49 Indeed, as eskell50 puts it, an embodied body represents, and is, a lived experience where the interplay of irreducible natural, social, cultural and psychical phenomena are brought to fruition through each individuals resolution of external structures, embodied experi-ence and choice. Building on much of the aforementioned research, therefore, and inluenced by further works

    25 German also see German and, to a lesser extent, cGowan .26 Vansteenhuyse .27 Fox also see Tsamis .28 Nafplioti, this volume.29 Hamilakis 1, , . This cursory list is by no means exhaustive, of course.30 See also e.g. ina, afplioti, Peters, Soar, Zeman-Winiewska, this volume.31 Kopytoff 1.32 E.g. Kopytoff 1 Gosden and arshall 1 Joy .33 alafouris , esp.11 Whitley Voutsaki 1, esp. .34 Appadurai 1.35 Kopytoff 1.36 Hoskins .37 Sofaer .38 Hamilakis .39 Gosden and arshall 1.40 Joy .41 Cf. Hamilakis , 1 also see Hamilakis et al. , 11.42 Cf. alafouris , esp.1 Fowler , 4.43 Sofaer , , esp. 4, .44 See also Fowler , 4.45 Cf. Sofaer , 4 Betancourt et al. aggidis 1 Hamilakis et al. , 11.46 Cf. Shilling , 1, who makes a similar point.47 Sofaer , . Also see Hamilakis 1, 11.48 Voutsaki 1, . See also eskell 1, 1 Tarlow , alafouris , 11 Bori and Robb , and Joy , 4 for an application of the relational approach to object biographiesidentities.49 y deinition overlaps, but does not coincide, with Grosz 1, 4 (as cited in Joyce , 141).50 eskell 1, 1.

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    Anna Simandiraki-Grimshaw

    of e.g. eskell,51 Joyce,52 Rautman et al.,53 Sofaer,54 Gosden and Marshall,55 Joy,56 and Voutsaki,57 I want to take a closer look at the human body as a node of entangled materialities, concepts and interactions.58

    There is a multitude of inoan human beings available to us. An examination of their luctuations per area (and through time) is not a new phenomenon in specialist studies, e.g. in discussions of igurine types,59 glyptic60 or burial assemblages,61 not to mention non-somatic ields, such as pottery studies62 or demographic and urbanization research.63 y paper draws examples from the combination of such a variety of data about the prehistoric human condition from mobile artefacts (e.g. seals, sealings, furniture, pottery), immobile artefacts (e.g. architecture), ecofacts (e.g. osseous material) etc.64 Examination of this inoan corporeal dataset has been conducted in part through electronic cataloguing of bodily occurrences65 and has taken into consideration, among others, area, era, status, medium, iconography, pathology, bodily treatment, fragmentation, nutrition etc. But it is not my intention here to provide an exhaustive account of stratiied inoan corporeal networks.66 Instead, having previously dis-cussed bodily consumption,67 animal-human hybridity,68 religious exchanges from a corporeal perspective69 and the human body in inoan religious iconography,70 my general intention with this paper is to work through further potential bodily concepts within the chronological and geographical limits of Bronze Age Crete.

    In order to navigate through a potentially vast exploration of the relationality of inoan human beings, I pro-pose the notion of zonation the gamut of states of difference between bodies.71 These states of difference may be geographical, social, sensory etc., perhaps visually conceptualized as a series of cross-cutting ripples. The speciic aims of my paper are, therefore, to

    1. highlight the largely elusive andor underplayed diversity of biological and represented72 humans in Minoan Crete through a combination of data from different sources . and, in turn, point out the bodys consequentiality for inoan identities.

    The future outcome of such investigation, of which only examples are selected here, would result not necessarily in a quantiiable corpus of data, but, rather, in a multimodal description of the shifting inoan human condition.73

    51 E.g. eskell 1, 1, , 1.52 E.g. Joyce .53 Rautman .54 Sofaer .55 Gosden and arshall1.56 Joy .57 Voutsak