Ambiguity & Minoan Neopalatial Seal Imagery
Studies in Mediterranean Archaeology & Literature No. PB 176
By Erin McGowan
Distributed by Coronet Books Inc.
96 pages, Illustrated
Minoan seals have often been described as probelmatically ambiguous. By assembling and reframing current discourse, this volume challenges the value of characterising glyptic imagery in this way. Istead ambiguity may indicate the presence of deliberate practice, incorporateing varied meaning through multivalent or condensed expression, well suited to the compact size of the glyptic medium. Using a form of relational network theory, the author explores the ways in which a selection of glyptic images from Ayia Triada respond to different coneptual and associative contexts and suggests that the idea of indeterminate ambiguity--as a by-product of western taxonomic systems--may mask this multivalent aspect. By positioning glyptic imagery as multivalent this volume makes a signficant contribution to debates within Aegean Bronze Age archaeology and current interpretative practice.
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