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6027Re: [ANE-2] Re: New Theory on the Evolution of Egypt

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  • B. Andelkovic
    Sep 10, 2007
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      Dear Mr. Segovia,

      Thank you for your comments.

      >It´s quite clear that individuals and their power struggles
      >are not new in egyptology, but the concept of "aggrandisers"

      It is my believe that "Egyptology" and Egyptian archaeology dealing with the
      pre- and proto-history of Egypt are hardly quite the same discipline
      (although the first two "Dinasties" are correctly identified as the very end
      of Naqada IIIC1-IIID).

      As far as one can conclude from Prof. Castillos own words: "aggrandizers,
      that is, individuals seeking to benefit from favourable circumstances to
      create a power base for themselves and emerge like god-like rulers of a
      larger community than the one to which they originally belonged", it pretty
      much looks like the very same thing (i.e. power struggle of individuals),
      and accordingly, can hardly be perceived as "new".

      >the beginning of class stratification in predynastic
      >Egypt I have never read it discussed in any egyptology book or paper so far

      Here is an excerpt from my 2004 reference:

      "We have no doubts that conflict was, if not a prime mover (cf. Griswold
      1992b: 237), a prime method then of the state formation. Therefore, we agree
      with Campagno (2002b: 21) that "in the beginning [and ever since] was war",
      but we are prone to disagree over the reason, namely exotic prestige goods,
      he suggested for the conflict. Exotic goods were, in our view, merely an
      item in a long list of gains that went to the ultimate winner of the "grand
      prize", because what the Egyptian elite were really fighting for was
      absolute power. Needless to say, the final winner was the Divine King. A
      number of authors (e.g. Patch 1991: 359-360; Geller 1992: 156-157; cf.
      Griswold 1992b: 239; Siegemund 1999: 243-252) reject
      competition/conflict/warfare as a motivating factor because they likewise
      consider only a few isolated items of the winner's list. Indeed, the
      conflict was hardly caused by shortage of land, approaching of the carrying
      capacity, or scarce resources. The natural resources and energetic potential
      were more than abundant in the Nile Valley. Nonetheless, the most manifest
      aspect of the power competition was truly a fight over land, or better said,
      fight over territory (and more territory) caused, as Needler stressed (1984:
      31) by "the inherent tendency of absolute power to expand beyond its
      borders". In essence, Bard and Carneiro (1989; cf. Bard 1992: 16) were
      right with their circumscription model, except in omitting to reveal the
      main and the most important reason for the competition - the true prime
      mover - the will to power."

      The other two of my references (I have mentioned in my previous mail) are
      still in press, so no wonder that you have never read them. The similar is
      valid for my PhD "The Evolution of Gerzean Culture: Internal and External
      Factors" (submitted December 2002, defended June 2003, University of
      Belgrade) that was, unfortunately, written in Serbian.

      However, let me mention but a few, I believe that similar views are held in
      the several papers of my friend and colleague Dr. Marcelo Campagno
      (including his PhD, "From Kin-chiefs to God-kings. Emergence and
      Consolidation of the State in Ancient Egypt: From Badarian to Early Dynastic
      Period, ca. 4500-2700 B.C.", defended December 2001, University of Buenos
      Aires), as well as in the works of Dr. Alejandro Jimenez-Serrano
      (Universidad de Jean).

      I have to add that I know, respect and appreciate Prof. Castillos work very
      much. The point that you might have missed is rather related to Eliot
      Braun's comment (September 3, 2007) "It seems that once every few years
      someone discovers 'America' and the PAPERS PICK IT UP." [emphasis added]

      With best regards,

      Branislav Andelkovic
      Editor, Journal of the Serbian Archaeological Society

      Dr. Branislav Andelkovic
      Asst. Professor of Near Eastern Archaeology
      Faculty of Philosophy, Department of Archaeology
      Cika Ljubina 18-20, 11000 Belgrade, Serbia
      E-mail: B.Andelkovic@...
      Tel.+381 11 3206 235; Fax.+381 11 2639 356
      The Belgrade Mummy: http://www.f.bg.ac.yu/bemum/
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