Interaction and its consequences: assessing the nexus between economic interaction, mobility and settlement dynamics in the Mediterranean Bronze Age
Through time and its paradigmatic shifts, archaeological interpretation has sometimes conceived human mobility and economic interaction as alternative explanations to make sense of social and cultural change at various scales.
In this paper my (somewhat obvious, but not frequently articulated) point is that there is actually a systemic connection between economic interaction and movement of people. It is suggested here that in situations of encounter, frequently, the hegemonic role and directional influence of some of the participants, is paired with a reverse in-flow of bodies from the non-hegemonic communities that become ineluctably attracted by the perceived origin of such an influence.
I will try to support my argument discussing data from the Roca Archaeological Survey, the survey project recently undertaken by the University of Bologna around the important Late Bronze Age hub of Rocavecchia in South-eastern Italy. Such discussion will be combined also with insights from different contexts, with the aim of disentangling the complex relationship between hegemony, economic interaction and mobility.