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Where the Wild Things Are: From the comfortable domus to glimpses of past ontologies

When Mar 04, 2019 09:00 AM to
Mar 05, 2019 05:00 PM
Where McDonald Institute Seminar Room, Courtyard Building, Downing Street
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This workshop will explore how archaeological traces of domestic life can be used as instruments to consider ontological difference. The intent is to critically discuss conceptions of domestic architecture and practice as inherently familiar, and review how archaeological traces of lived space can constitute ways to glimpse radically different worlds. The workshop will thus bring together a range of scholars working with architecture and space, primarily in prehistory, in an attempt to ‘de-domesticate’ dwellings and settlements and consider their potential for alterity: to find where the wild things are in archaeological spaces.

The objectives will be to bring a range of international scholars together to (a) discuss how we can attempt to use architecture and built spaces to glimpse ontologies of the past that may be foreign and unfamiliar; (b) explore how the study of built environments, settlements and households is transformed through perspectives influenced by the material and ontological turns more broadly; and (c) to encourage the invited participants to de-domesticate domestic space and venture into wilder landscapes of interpretation.

The workshop springs from and is funded by the research project 'Archaeology of Dwelling. Architecture, household, and social structure in Scandinavia through deep time, 1800BCE- 1000CE' (Research Council of Norway/Marie Curie COFUND grant 251212), as well as through a generous contribution from the D M McDonald Grants and Awards Fund.

Attendance is free, coffee/tea will be provided.  Please register by emailing Dr Marianne Hem Eriksen (, as there is limited space.


Programme details




An Oral History of the McDonald Institute for Archaeological Research