HomeTechnical Actors, Social Actors: from material remains to the Social Organisation of Labour. From Prehistory to Present

HomeTechnical Actors, Social Actors: from material remains to the Social Organisation of Labour. From Prehistory to Present

Technical Actors, Social Actors: from material remains to the Social Organisation of Labour. From Prehistory to Present

Acteurs techniques, acteurs sociaux : des vestiges matériels à l’organisation sociale du travail, de la Préhistoire à nos jours

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Published on Tuesday, March 14, 2023

Abstract

The 43rd event of the Nice Côte d’Azur International Meeting of Archaeology and History will deal with the division and social organisation of labour, as defined by material remains (tools, finished products, images, biological witnesses, etc.), considered at various spatial scales (domestic units, workshops, sites and territories) and over the long duration. The objective will therefore be to reflect, between specialists from different disciplines, cultures and periods, upon the social organisation of productive activities within ancient and present-day human communities, with a particular focus on the links between technical phenomena and social arrangements, and on the methods that enable to account for them.

Announcement

This call for papers is launched within the framework of the 43rd Nice Côte d’Azur International Meeting of Archaeology and History, which will be held from 11 to 13 October 2023, in Nice.

Argument

Regardless of whether it has been regarded as a factor determining individual alienation and disintegration of the community linked to increasing demand in productivity by 19th century philosophers of the Political Economy (Smith 1776, Marx 1867) or, on the contrary, as a vector of cohesion and solidarity among sociologists of the same period (Durkheim 1893), the division of labour is an eminently social phenomenon.

The nature and degree of specialisation, as well as the ways in which production activities are organised are the basis of a number of societal categorisations made by ethnologists and archaeologists: a system of production thus defines a type of society or social organisation.

For historians and archaeologists, the division of labour often refers to mechanisms of cooperation or competition, tradition or innovation, all of which are essential for understanding the evolution of societies.

The specialisation of human activities - and of the multiple tasks related to them - is certainly part of the organisation of human communities and can work as a structuring social factor. More or less marked depending on the case, the specialisation of human activities concerns all cultures and involves various, multiple and inter-related social categories, some of which relate to sex, age or gender, while others refer to particular classes or castes. The specialisation of labour and production may also operate on an intra-community scale (organisation into groups of specialists: trades, corporations, guilds, etc.) or be based on complementarity and exchange between specialised communities, or even between different societies. Finally, some forms of specialisation relate to distinct fields of activity (e.g. subsistence vs. crafts), while others are based on the same type of production, whose chaîne opératoire is then segmented into tasks carried out by different actors, whether specialist or non-specialist.

In this conference, the social organisation of labour will be explored through the material evidence, by examining different categories of artefacts on the basis of multi-scalar approaches: from tools, finished products, and production waste, to images, various types of spaces (domestic or craft-production units, funerary spaces…) as well as sites (settlements, workshops…).

For archaeologists, and for prehistorians in particular, these material remains, once analysed through multiple approaches and by means of sophisticated methods are privileged, and sometimes sole indicators to apprehend production activities, identify the “actors” of production and reconstruct or account for the organisation of ancient societies.

This material evidence can shed light on entire segments of the organization of production, including those that are attested in “historical” societies and whose functioning is not always regulated by explicit norms or which is simply not documented by written sources.

Provided that they are accurately interpreted, material remains can reveal gestures, practices and “habitus” referring to the processes of production and to the organization of labour.

The aim of the 43rd Nice Côte d’Azur International Meeting of Archaeology and History will be to discuss the social organisation of work within human communities among specialists from different disciplines, cultures, and periods, by looking at the relationships between production and social organisation, as well as at the protocols and methods that might be applied to account for them.

Topics to be addressed:

  • The technical and social spaces of work, from domestic to specialised production.
  • The organisation of activities according to sex, age, gender and other social categories.
  • Specialisation and complementarity of production at intra- and inter-community levels.
  • Contributions of archaeology, ethnology and experimentation in the reconstruction of the process, gestures and organisation of work.
  • From the reconstitution of the social organisation of work to that of the economic and political organisation of ancient communities.

To submit a paper (oral presentation)

Proposals must be submitted by 7 May 2023 at the latest,

to the following address : https://www.cepam.cnrs.fr/evenement/43e-rencontres-internationales-darcheologie-et-dhistoire-de-nice-cote-dazur/

Please, click on the link « inscription », at the bottom of the page, and fill the form. A summary of the proposed paper (of about 500 words) will be requested. The languages of communication are French and English.

Accommodation and meals for the speakers (one person per paper) will be provided for the entire duration of the conference; travel costs will be borne by the speakers' institution.

Organizing committee

  • Carole CHEVAL: UMR 7264 CEPAM, Nice
  • Olivier LANGLOIS: CNRS, UMR 7264 CEPAM, Nice
  • Michel LAUWERS: Université Côte d‘Azur, UMR 7264 CEPAM, Nice
  • Giulio PALUMBI: CNRS, UMR 7264 CEPAM, Nice
  • Haris PROKOPIOU: Université Paris 1, Panthéon Sorbonne, UMR7041, Nanterre

Management

  • Anne-Marie Gomez: CNRS, UMR 7264 CEPAM, Nice
  • Delphine CHETIVEAUX: CNRS, UMR 7264 CEPAM, Nice

Scientific committee

  • Lars ANDERSON: Université Paris-Nanterre, UMR 8068 TEMPS, Nanterre
  • Laurence ASTRUC:CNRS, UMR 7041 ArScAn, Nanterre
  • Catherine BAROIN: CNRS émérite, UMR 8068 TEMPS, Nanterre
  • Philippe BERNARDI: CNRS, UMR 8589 LaMOP, Paris
  • Fabien BLANC-GARIDEL: Service d’Archéologie de la Métropole Nice Côte d’Azur, Nice
  • Naya CADALEN: Université Côte d‘Azur, UMR 7264 CEPAM, Nice 
  • Christophe DARMANGEAT: Université Paris Cité, Ladyss, Paris
  • Gilles DURRENMATH: Université Côte d‘Azur, UMR 7264 CEPAM, Nice 
  • Thierry LEJARS: CNRS, UMR 8546 AOROC, Paris
  • Pierre LEMONNIER: CNRS émérite, UMR 7308 CREDO, Marseille
  • Jean-Marc PÉTILLON: CNRS, UMR 5608 TRACES, Toulouse
  • Sandra ZANELLA: Université Côte d‘Azur, UMR 7264 CEPAM, Nice
  • Julien ZURBACH: ENS, Paris Sciences Lettres, Paris

Places

  • Maison de l’étudiant Olivier Chesneau, 5 Avenue François Mitterrand
    Nice, France (06)

Event attendance modalities

Full on-site event


Date(s)

  • Sunday, May 07, 2023

Keywords

  • division du travail, organisation sociale, culture matérielle, histoire, archéologie, préhistoire, anthropologie

Contact(s)

  • Olivier Langlois
    courriel : 43_Rencontres_Nice [at] cepam [dot] cnrs [dot] fr

Reference Urls

Information source

  • Olivier Langlois
    courriel : 43_Rencontres_Nice [at] cepam [dot] cnrs [dot] fr

License

CC0-1.0 This announcement is licensed under the terms of Creative Commons CC0 1.0 Universal.

To cite this announcement

« Technical Actors, Social Actors: from material remains to the Social Organisation of Labour. From Prehistory to Present », Call for papers, Calenda, Published on Tuesday, March 14, 2023, https://doi.org/10.58079/1app

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