Workshop: Missing Evidence for Ancient Cultures
When: Fri, 20.10.2023 9:00 AM until Sat, 21.10.2023 5:00 PM
Where: Warburgstraße 26, 20354 Hamburg
Archaeological evidence and transmitted literary sources do not always match. They may complement each other, but often also contradict each other. Our understanding of the past is intimately tied to our own predispositions, and evidence interpreted according to what we find, a priori, most plausible. At the same time, the availability of our evidence depends to numerous, often unknown, parameters. The problem with all of this is that missing evidence, by its very nature, is difficult to identify, and that arguments based on perceived missing evidence must inherently remain largely conjecture. This workshop aims to compare case studies from various ancient civilisations and map available sources against missing evidence of different kinds. In doing so, the workshops will generate new insights on how the availability of evidence affects our perception of ancient cultures. In addition to this methodological goal, the workshop’s comparative approach may also inform academics in a given field to better contextualise the available evidence, and potentially to amplify the evidence with that from other, related, disciplines.