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Call for papers: EAA 2021 Session #281 - Resource Use and Recycling in Urban Ecologies

EAA session organised by Tom Fitton (University of York), Olympia Bobou (Aarhus University), Mik Lisowski (University of York), Rubina Raja (Aarhus University) and Stephanie Wynne-Jones (University of York).

The Urban Ecology and Transitions of the Zanzibar Archipelago Project (UETZAP) and Centre for Urban Network Evolutions (UrbNet) invite you to submit abstracts for a joint EAA 2021 session on resource use and recycling in urban settlements. We welcome papers from any geographic region to encourage a broad discussion of urban ecologies from Antiquity to the Early Modern period.

Towns and cities rely on a complex web of resources, woven into the infrastructure and the practices of urban society. Archaeology is increasingly able to characterise such resource use using high-resolution methodologies to investigate human-centred stories about the urban past. These approaches have also begun to recover evidence for ‘circular economies’ of recycling and reuse in past urban settings, which contribute to contemporary discussions on sustainability and resource depletion.

Archaeological studies of urban ecology rely on combining multiple scales of analysis from domestic production to landscape use, and draw on landscape archaeology, environmental archaeology, and archaeometric studies of craft production among others. This array of methodological avenues also creates a challenge, in that having set out to study environmental resource use, ecological impact, and networked relationships from a wide variety of data sources, it is easy to focus on the results of a single mode of analysis rather than a holistic narrative.

What we offer in this session is the opportunity for researchers from diverse methodological backgrounds to present the results of empirical studies with an emphasis on humanist narratives of resource use and recycling. This might include macro- or micro-scale studies utilising settlement and landscape archaeology, zooarchaeology or archaeobotany, stable isotope or other archaeometric analysis, as well as more traditional archaeological and historic studies, provided the emphasis is on the themes of resource use or circular economies in urban contexts, supported by evidence of practice.

We hope thereby to stimulate discussion on the anthropological narratives of urban dynamics and ways of life which bind archaeological studies of urban ecology, rather than contrasting methodological procedure alone.

The deadline for abstract submissions is 11 February, and the EAA 2021 conference will take place in Kiel and online between the 8-11 September 2021. Abstracts up to 300 words should be submitted through EAA 2021 website (https://www.e-a-a.org/eaa2021). If you would like more details please get in touch with the session co-organisers through tom.fitton@york.ac.uk.

Session co-organisers:

Tom Fitton (University of York)

Olympia Bobou (Aarhus University)

Mik Lisowski (University of York)

Rubina Raja (Aarhus University)

Stephanie Wynne-Jones (University of York)

Keywords: Urban Ecology; Landscape; Recycling; Resource Use; Settlement; Craft Production