Thursday, October 3, 2013

The Archaeology of Gatherings

25th to 27th October 2013
Institute of Technology, Sligo

This October bank holiday weekend will be an exciting one for Sligo as both the Archaeology of Gatherings Conference and the Sligo Live Music Festival are taking place.


The Archaeology of Gatherings is a thematic international conference taking place at the Institute of Technology, Ash Lane, Sligo, Ireland, at the end of October. As 2013 is the year of ‘The Gathering’ in Ireland the theme was chosen to explore why people over millennia have come together for assemblies and social interactions of various forms. By bringing together a range of speakers from different disciplines, time periods, and countries, the conference aims to explore the material culture and psychology behind gatherings of people. 

The conference papers examine a broad spectrum of aspects on the theme of gatherings. While some aim to interpret the archaeological evidence available to us from prehistoric through to more recent times, others present insight into the psychological and sociological aspects of assemblies from contemporary contexts. The diverse academic backgrounds of the speakers, who are coming to Sligo from all over Ireland, the US, the UK, and Norway will contribute to our understanding of the significance of gatherings in people’s lives throughout the past and for us today.

The conference commences Friday evening (25th) with informal drinks at the Glasshouse Hotel in Sligo. Conference papers will be held all day Saturday with a demonstration by Ancient Music Ireland during lunch break and a poster session held during the tea and coffee break. On Sunday morning the conference papers will continue until lunch time. In the afternoon there will be an unofficial field trip for anyone who is interested.

To register and for further information about the conference and the speakers visit our website or find us on Facebook.



List of the speakers and papers at the Archaeology of Gatherings conference:

Keynote Speaker (Archaeology):
Prof Mike Parker-Pearson, Institute of Archaeology, University College London.
Gatherings at Durrington Walls and Stonehenge.

Keynote Speaker (Sociology):
Prof. Clark McPhail, University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign. 
The Life Course of Temporary Gatherings.

Dr Edel Bhreathnach, Discovery Programme.
Medieval Gatherings.

Dr Dominic Bryan, Institute of Irish Studies, Queens University Belfast.
Public Space and Power – Ritual and Identity in a ‘Shared’ Belfast.

Dr Stefan Bergh, Dept of Archaeology, NUI, Galway. 
Meeting at the edge – Turlough Hill as a place of prehistoric assembly.

Gathering the Nations: Kingdoms, Communities and Civil Society in Early Medieval Ireland.

Dr Hans Hognestad, Centre for Cultural and Sports Studies, Telemark University, Norway.
Identity, power and the sociality of football.

Dr Jonathan Lanman, Institute of Cognition and Culture, QUB. 
Ritual and Divergent Modes of Cohesion.

Under the same night sky- the architecture and meaning of Bronze Age stone circles in mid-Ulster.

Dr Julia E. M. Cussans1, Stephen J. Dockrill2, Ian Armit2, Julie M. Bond2, Jo T. McKenzie2 (1Archaeological Solutions Ltd., 2University of Bradford).
‘You’re invited to a party, don’t turn up legless’: case studies in feasting and community gatherings in Iron Age Scotland. 

James Bonsall1, Dr. Chris Gaffney2, Prof. Vince Gaffney3, Heather Gimson1, Robert M. Chapple4. (1University of Bradford, Earthsound Archaeological Geophysics, 2University of Bradford, 3University of Birmingham, 4William Dunlop Archaeological Photographic Archive, Irish Radiocarbon and Dendrological Dates).
Tonight we’re going party like it’s 1985! The Archaeology of Festivals in Geophysical Data.

Dr Una MacConville, Sociologist and Visiting Fellow, Centre for Death and Society, University of Bath, UK.
Gatherings on the ‘Far side banks of Jordan’.

Dr Candace Weddle, Ph.D., Anderson University South Carolina, USA.
Blood, Fire and Feasting: The Sensory Experience of Greco-Roman Sacrifice.

Shifting Territorial Boundaries and Medieval Assembly Places.

Dr Richard Madgwick, Cardiff University.
A Passion for Pork: Feasting in southern Britain from the Neolithic to the Iron Age. 

Dr Louise Nugent, Independent Scholar.
Gatherings of faith: Pilgrimage in medieval Ireland.

Edel Barry, MPhil, Built Heritage Collective Ireland.
Gatherings: The Archaeology of Railways in Ireland.

Stephen Dixon, MSc, IT Sligo.
Archaeological and Anthropological aspects of 'forced gathering' from within the Jewish Holocaust.

Pádraig Meehan, Independent Scholar.
'Cargo Cults' in the Pacific; Irish Neolithic parallels? 

Prof Stuart Tyson Smith, University of California, Santa Barbara, US.
Colonial Gatherings: The Presentation of Inu in New Kingdom Egypt and the British Imperial Durbar, a Comparison.

Dr Robert Hensey, Archaeological Research Professional.
Crowd-sourcing in the Boyne Valley.