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Humanities 2018, 7(4), 116; https://doi.org/10.3390/h7040116

The Agency of the Displaced? Roman Expansion, Environmental Forces, and the Occupation of Marginal Landscapes in Ancient Italy

1,2,* and 3,4,*
1
Institut für Orientalische und Europäische Archäologie, Austrian Academy of Sciences, A 1020 Vienna, Austria
2
Institute of Archaeology, University College London, London WC1H 0PY, UK
3
Department of History, Federal University of Minas Gerais, Belo Horizonte 31270-901, Brazil
4
Department of Classics and Ancient History, University of Exeter, Exeter EX4 4RJ, UK
*
Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 1 February 2018 / Revised: 4 September 2018 / Accepted: 16 October 2018 / Published: 12 November 2018
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Abstract

This article approaches the agency of displaced people through material evidence from the distant past. It seeks to construct a narrative of displacement where the key players include human as well as non-human agents—namely, the environment into which people move, and the socio-political and environmental context of displacement. Our case-study from ancient Italy involves potentially marginalized people who moved into agriculturally challenging lands in Daunia (one of the most drought-prone areas of the Mediterranean) during the Roman conquest (late fourth-early second centuries BCE). We discuss how the interplay between socio-political and environmental forces may have shaped the agency of subaltern social groups on the move, and the outcomes of this process. Ultimately, this analysis can contribute towards a framework for the archaeological study of marginality and mobility/displacement—while addressing potential limitations in evidence and methods. View Full-Text
Keywords: Marginality; climate change; environment; ancient Italy; resilience; archaeology; survey evidence; displacement; mobility Marginality; climate change; environment; ancient Italy; resilience; archaeology; survey evidence; displacement; mobility
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Perego, E.; Scopacasa, R. The Agency of the Displaced? Roman Expansion, Environmental Forces, and the Occupation of Marginal Landscapes in Ancient Italy. Humanities 2018, 7, 116.

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