IMHICIHU   13380
Unidad Ejecutora - UE
congresos y reuniones científicas
Desigualdades económicas y políticas en la Siria-Palestina amarniana
Buenos Aires
Congreso; Coloquio PEFSCEA «Desigualdades antiguas: economía, cultura y sociedad en el Oriente Medio y el Mediterráneo», Buenos Aires, 27-29 de Marzo de 2019; 2019
Institución organizadora:
0. The Near East along with the Nile valley are two of the first locations were institutional inequality appeared in the world?in these cases around the late 4th millennium BCE. Syria-Palestine, as a combined region, was ever peripheral to the historical and socio-political processes occurring in Lower Mesopotamia and Egypt. Nonetheless, and albeit a little later than the primeval processes in Mesopotamia and Egypt, economic and political inequality did appear in the region, fully-blown at least by the Early Bronze Age with the first urban centres. 1. In terms of historiography, economic inequality in Late Bronze Age Syria-Palestine was and still is address following three general models: a feudal model (A. Alt, A.F. Rainey, N.K. Gottwald), now mostly abandoned due to its many anachronisms, although the terminology remains; the two-sectors model (M. Liverani, M. Heltzer), with some ?feudal? characteristics although basically sketched from K. Marx?s Asiatic Mode of Production; and a patrimonial model (J.D. Schloen, L. Stager, P.J. King), based on M. Weber?s typology and adapted for Syria-Palestine.2. Regarding political inequality, the discussion during the 20th century has moved around the previous different models. In terms of political topography and practice, Syria and Palestine are both divergent and concurrent. Syria presents a greater urban development in its many sites, palaces, archives, armies, etc., namely many features proper of small city-states. However, personal relationships within the political communities and towards the exterior (dealing with higher powers) seem to be the established and regular mode of political behaviour (no evidence of written laws, no evidence of state apparatuses for controlling the population). Palestine has a much more modest urban development and less evidence of complex organisations in the urban sites: palaces, but no archives; evidence of writing for diplomatic purposes mainly, but not so much for administration. Political practice is also conducted through personal relationships.3. Building on the archaeological and textual evidence we dispose of, regarding the political anthropology of Syria-Palestine, it is possible to argue for the existence of a native political ontology based on personal and hierarchical relationships like patron-client bonds. This ontology guides and illustrates the common political practice in the region during this period. Politics were profoundly hierarchical (unequal) but also bound by reciprocity, expressed by an exchange of protection and loyalty. This political ontology informs the divine and cosmological imagination as well: the human realm is incorporated in the divine realm, the Syrian king being a broker (actually the broker) between the gods and his community. There is no evidence of divine-human brokerage for Palestine, but the Palestinian kinglets did act as brokers between the Egyptian Pharaoh and their communities.