Extending the self through material culture: Private letters and personal relationships in second-century Egypt

Stoner, Jo (2014) Extending the self through material culture: Private letters and personal relationships in second-century Egypt. Archaeological Review from Cambridge, 29 (1). pp. 129-143. ISSN 0261-4332. (Access to this publication is currently restricted. You may be able to access a copy if URLs are provided)

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Abstract

Through reference to specific examples, this article demonstrates how the act of sending private letters maintained social relationships between people separated by distance in late antique Egypt. Many of these texts also contain references to the exchange of various types of goods between writers and recipients. Through an analysis of these references and material culture theories, the kind of role material culture had in social networks in late antique Egypt can be determined. This article argues that objects were used in lieu of a person’s physical presence to provide comfort and company to the recipient in surrogate form. As a result, the textual examples reveal how different objects, including the letters themselves, were used in an attempt to bridge geographical divides.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled keywords: Egypt; Late Antiquity; material culture; archaeology; papyri; letters
Subjects: C Auxiliary Sciences of History > CC Archaeology
Divisions: Faculties > Humanities > School of European Culture and Languages > Classical and Archaeological Studies
Depositing User: Jo Stoner
Date Deposited: 23 Jun 2017 11:06 UTC
Last Modified: 26 Jun 2017 09:45 UTC
Resource URI: https://kar.kent.ac.uk/id/eprint/62074 (The current URI for this page, for reference purposes)
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