Mittwoch, 05. November 2014, 09:00 - 18:30 iCal

Governing Ancient Empires

5th and Final International Conference of the Research Network "Imperium and Officium"

Aula am Campus der Universität Wien
Spitalgasse 2-4 / Hof 1.11, 1090 Wien

Tagung, Konferenz, Kongress, Symposium

Weitere Termine

Donnerstag, 06. November 2014, 09:00 - 17:30

Freitag, 07. November 2014, 09:00 - 17:00

This final conference of our research network aims at drawing together the several threads of our argument with a view towards evaluating our findings in an interdisciplinary context. It will be divided into three panels:

Panel 1 will be entitled “Patterns of Communication, Publication and Documentation: The Practical and Symbolic Significance of the Written Word in Ancient Administrations.” Here we draw on our work especially on epistolary communication in administrative settings. We shall explore, on the one hand, the tension between rule-bound ‘bureaucratic’ modes of procedure and personalized ad-hoc problem-solving, and on the other, the dichotomy between systems that rely on the independent power of the document in contrast to settings in which the written word has an ancillary function at best and can be eclipsed or superseded by oral negotiation.

Panel 2, “Rulers and Subjects: Practices of Social Control, Decision Making, Regulation and Legislation in Ancient Empires,” addresses the wide spectrum of structures of dominion situated between the ideal types of bureaucratic and patrimonial rule. Case studies will support generalizations for individual periods and diachronic comparisons based on the work of the Network.

Panel 3, “State Power, Fiscal Regimes and the Recruitment of Manpower,” focuses on the core interests of ancient states. The ‘view from the bottom’ has been imposed on us owing to our work on documentary sources of an often rather ‘humble’ nature. We shall investigate how this approach can be integrated with a more general, model-oriented view of the general lines of development that can be discerned in the fiscal regimes of the ancient empires we have been working on.

Zur Webseite der Veranstaltung


NFN "Imperium and Officium"


Martina Schmidl
Institut für Orientalistik
+43 (0)1 4277 43467