Session: #352

Theme & Session Format

6. Material culture studies and societies
Session format:
Regular session

Title & Content

Empowering the Voiceless. The Role of the Rural Population in State Building and Christianisation in East-Central Europe
The proposed session aims to bring together researchers from Europe, who are dealing with different, and yet connected affairs of the archaeological heritage of the networks of state and church, and especially, religious changes in the Middle Ages. In the last decade, interest in the research of Christianisation has been growing. Diverse approaches in history were observable; still, researchers have investigated the process primarily focusing on the higher levels of the ecclesiastic network, mostly due to the availability of sources. By applying new, comprehensive methods, with regional and interdisciplinary cooperation on the investigation of neglected sources and the often-overlooked rural population, new narratives will become available on the state formation and Christianisation processes of East-Central Europe.
The session aims to examine how and why state politics have interfered in diverse religious affairs, such as the process of Christianisation and the development of the local church system in the early Middle Ages, the promotion and support of certain cults, religious orders, or particular places of pilgrimage to the later Middle Ages. The aim of the session is to give a Longue-durée perspective on the matter, by bringing these processes together.
The session welcomes papers focusing on the early and high middle ages, within the range of the following topics:
- early rural churches, churchyards and field cemeteries
- problem of transitional cemeteries and burial practices
- connection between early state power centres and the ecclesiastical network
- monastic networks and Christianisation
- material culture connected to Christianisation
Interregional studies, Christianisation, material culture, rural church network, early fortifications, burial archaeology
Session associated with MERC:
Session associated with CIfA:
Session associated with SAfA:
Session associated with CAA:
Session associated with DGUF:
Session associated with other:
Project "Empowering the Voiceless. The Role of the Rural Population in State Building and Christianisation in East-Central Europe", Primus scheme of Charles University, Prague


Main organiser:
Maria Vargha (Czech Republic) 1,2
Ivo Stefan (Czech Republic) 2
Tibor Rácz (Hungary) 3
1. University of Vienna
2. Charles University, Prague
3. Ferenczy Museum Center