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Archaeology of Commons: cultural Heritage and Material Evidence of a Disappearing Europe


The main goal of the project is to attain the intimate social dimension at the base of the common lands management in the context of South Europe Mountain regions, by means of historical and archaeological analysis.
The existence of common lands, the complexity of their different uses and the permanence of common rights on lands were crucial in shaping rural landscapes, so they are nowadays protected as natural heritage (Natural parks, Sites of Communitarian Interest). However, the historical organization of common lands is not well known.
The main question of the project is how archaeological methods can investigate the dynamic nature of commons. In order to answer this question and combining landscape archaeology and documentary research methods, the fellow Dr. Anna Maria Stagno will investigate two paths:
- reconstructing topographical organization of common lands and its transformations
- archaeological visibility of conflicts
The project will be developed in two areas in Basque Mountains (Sierra Cantabrica and Alarar Mountains). Through the employment of different archaeological methods, the project plans to link the study of primary production areas and settlements, considering all together the investigation of private lands, common lands historically used by the same community (and to identify the different communities/settlements that, through the ages, have held common access rights on the same areas) and settlements.
The project covers a trans-European dimension based on the enhancement of the existing dialogue between three research groups that investigate rural areas (GIPyPAC of University of Basque Country, FRAMESPA of the Toulouse Le Mirail University and LASA of Genova University). The results of the Spanish case studies will be compared, trough targeted investigations, in uplands areas where LASA (Ligurian Apennines) and FRAMESPA-Terrae (Cerdagne Mountain) are carrying out multidisciplinary research projects.

Call for proposal

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Barrio Sarriena S N
48940 Leioa

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Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
Administrative Contact
Charo Sanchez (Mrs.)
EU contribution
€ 230 036,60