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Accueil du site → Doctorat → États-Unis → 2013 → Spatial dimensions of social complexity : Environment, economy, and settlement in the Jabbul Plain, 3000—550 BC

JOHNS HOPKINS UNIVERSITY (2013)

Spatial dimensions of social complexity : Environment, economy, and settlement in the Jabbul Plain, 3000—550 BC

Yukich, Sarah T. K.

Titre : Spatial dimensions of social complexity : Environment, economy, and settlement in the Jabbul Plain, 3000—550 BC

Auteur : Yukich, Sarah T. K.

Université de soutenance : JOHNS HOPKINS UNIVERSITY

Grade : Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) 2013

Résumé
Situated on the arid margins of rainfall agriculture between Aleppo and the Euphrates, the Jabbul Plain has served as an economic link between western Syria and Mesopotamia and as a meeting place for nomadic pastoralists and sedentary agriculturalists. This dissertation explores the development of complex human societies in the Jabbul during the Bronze and Iron Ages. It is grounded in a holistic analysis of settlement data collected by the 1996 survey of the Jabbul Plain. To conduct this analysis a GIS was employed with remote sensing data and a combination of spatial analysis tools designed to quantify changes in the patterns of settlement size and location over time. In order to establish a regional ceramic sequence and to provide a chronological underpinning for the GIS dataset, the collected surface ceramics from the survey were processed and analyzed. The Jabbul Plain settlement patterns are examined in the context of spatial models for the development of social complexity. The long-standing use of multi-tiered site-size hierarchies as a key archaeological marker of urbanization is critiqued and an alternative diachronic, multi-factor approach is offered for the interpretation of settlement hierarchies. Additionally, in order to provide a broader context for these spatial patterns, three principal types of data are considered—textual data pertinent to the political and economic history of the Jabbul Plain, archaeological survey data from other regions of Syro-Mesopotamia, and environmental data for the Jabbul region. Hydrological modeling of the Jabbul Plain clearly demonstrates a long-term consistently close relationship between settlement locations in the plain and water resources that underlay the many shorter-term fluctuations seen in site foundation and abandonment. By bringing together these analyses of the environmental context, settlement patterns, and sociopolitical and economic history of the Jabbul Plain, this dissertation concludes that three primary factors most likely affected the development of complex human societies in the Jabbul—the growing aridity of the local environment, use of the east-west interregional trade route through the region, and external political developments such as at the major urban center of Aleppo (Yamkhad) directly to the west of the plain.

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Page publiée le 13 avril 2014, mise à jour le 4 décembre 2018