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Bodies in Stone and Clay: Perception and Images of Living Beings in Mesopotamia - 09-10/11/2017, Paris (France)



Scholars specialist in images, in history and in biology who are also interested in the body and its representations exchange their point of view.

The study of the body and of bodies has changed dramatically in the last two decades thanks to the more recognized LGBT community, to the advances of medicine and to the quick development of digital images.
So, how do specialists on antiquity now think about the subject ?

Linked to the Gender Studies, this conference would like to consider the body with a more historical and biological approach, setting the subject in the context of Mesopotamian society of the II mill. and I mill. BC.

The conference aims to follow the biological changes which occur to a corpse from birth to death as well as the cultural responses to these alterations. In fact, the changes break the social networks and for restructuring them some actions are necessary (depiction of faces or bodies, magic words, changing of dresses…). Can they differ on the basis of sex and status? And is the representation in the texts as well as in the art linked to these actions? Can we reconstruct the image of an ‘ideal’ body? And by contrast, what is the opposite one?


FECHA/DATE/DATA: 09-10/11/2017


LUGAR/LOCATION/LUOGO: College de France (Paris, France)









Jeudi 9 novembre - Amphithéâtre Budé

9h00                 Accueil par Dominique Charpin, Professeur au Collège de France

9h15-9h30         L. Battini & A.-I. Langlois : Introduction

9h30-10h15       A. Garcia-Ventura : « Bodies and Gender in Ancient Near Eastern Studies: a Historiographical Approach »

10h15-11h00      R. Dolce : « Real Human Bodies, Images of Bodies and the Time Factor in the Early Cultures of Mesopotamia and Syria »


11h30-12h15      N. May : « Natural or Supernatural? The Giant as a Concept of Ideal Body. »

12h15-12h45                 Discussion


Salle 2

14h30-15h15      B. Muller : « Impact de la matière sur la forme : nature du support et mode de représentation des attitudes corporelles

15h15-16h00      V. Chalendar : « Vision et divisions du corps par les savants mésopotamiens »


16h10-16h55      S. Di Paolo : « Investigating Attitudes Towards Age in the Pictorial Representations of the Ancient Near East: an Elusive Concept for Analysis? »

16h55-17h40      A.-I. Langlois : « Le corps dans les lettres paléo-babyloniennes »

17h40-18h10                 Discussion


Vendredi 10 novembre- Salle 2

9h00-9h45         A. Pruss : « Body Proportions of Second Millennium
BC Figurines »

9h45-10h30       T. Ornan : « ‘Don’t you Have a Beard on Your Chin?’ (ARM I,108): Beards as Secondary Male Markers in 2nd millennium BC Mesopotamia. »


11h00-11h45      A. Attia : « L’œil par l’image, anatomie, pathologie »

11h45-12h30      V. Van der Stede : « As-tu vu celui dont le corps est abandonné dans le désert ? Je l’ai vu, son eṭemmu ne se repose pas aux Enfers… Le devenir du corps par-delà la mort en Mésopotamie »

12h30-12h45 : Discussion


14h30-15h15       L. Verderame : « Ecrit dans le corps : prédestination, physionomie, et mutilation dans la Mésopotamie
ancienne »

15h15-16h00      A. Mouton : « Body Alterations in Hittite Anatolia »

16h00-16h30                 Pause

16h30-17h15      L. Battini : « De la norme à l’ab-normale  : histoires mésopotamiennes de corps »

17h15-18h00      N. Ziegler : « La musicienne en Mésopotamie : le corps de l’artiste »

18h00-19h00      Discussion et clôture du colloque avec intervention de Dominique Charpin, Professeur au Collège de France et Co-Directeur de l’UMR 7192 PROCLAC

Dîner de clôture du colloque

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