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Review of Biblical Literature Blog

Power and Architecture: Monumental Public Architecture in the Bronze Age Near East and Aegean
Bretschneider, J., K. van Lerberghe and J. Driessen, editors

Leuven: Peeters, 2007 pp. viii + 236. Ä75.00

Series Information
Orientalia Lovaniensia Analecta, 156


Description: Public buildings reflect the investment of social resources and are usually interpreted as the embodiments of political, social, religious and economic power. The architecture of such buildings is often especially devised to reflect the performance of this power, incorporating a symbolism that served as a signpost for a particular social order. This symbolism was especially carried by monumentality and enhanced by scale, location, decoration, materials and visual impact. By making particular use of the natural landscape and the artificially created environment, the monumentality of public buildings helped to improve social cohesion and legitimated a particular societal system. Moreover, their intergenerational use gave such buildings great potential for communication and remembrance, especially during specific ceremonies. This volume is the reflection of an international conference which brought together specialists from two sides of the Eastern Mediterranean, the Near East and the Aegean, two areas that interrelated at different levels and at different moments during the Bronze Age, in order to examine how public architecture was used within this process.

Subjects: Methods, Historical Approaches, History, Archaeology

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Review by Aren Maeir
Published 7/24/2009
Citation: Aren Maeir, review of J. Bretschneider, J. Driessen, and K. Van Lerberghe, eds., Power and Architecture: Monumental Public Architecture in the Bronze Age Near East and Aegean, Review of Biblical Literature [http://www.bookreviews.org] (2009).


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