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Class, Class Consciousness and Class Identity in Antiquity and the Early Middle Ages (c. 3000 BCE-10

Recent decades have witnessed an increase in the sophistication of several categories of social analysis (such as ethnicity, gender, religion, and literary education) in ancient and medieval studies. Class, on the contrary, has received significantly less attention after the 1970s, in parallel with the decline of different strands of social history. This conference revisits the category of class, now armed with the arsenal of tools that the cultural turn, feminist theory, radical race theory, and other scholarly traditions have developed over the past years. In particular, we will discuss how ethnicity, race, religion, gender, and other social categories informed, articulated, and contributed to the formation of class identity and class consciousness, two concepts that reach back to classical Weberian and Marxist sociology. The workshop will intersperse formal papers with discussion sessions on classical and recent literature in the field.

FECHA/DATE/DATA: 31/01-01/02/2020

LUGAR/LOCATION/LUOGO: St John's College, University of Cambridge (Cambrige, England)




Se ruega enviar un email/please contact/si prega di inviare una email a John Weisweiler ( for the purposes of coffee, catering and lunch and in order to receive the readings.


Friday 31 January

Ruling Classes and Ruled Classes

(Boys Smith Room, Fisher Building)

Class Formation

9.20am John Weisweiler (Cambridge), Welcome

9.30am Discussion section: De Ste. Croix, Shaw, Van Wees-Fischer

10.30am Lea Niccolai (Cambridge), Transitio ad plebem, or maybe not: Philosophy as class identity in the late antique Greek East

11.10am Marcelo Candido da Silva (São Paulo), Karol and Sisenand: power and social mobility in early medieval Italy

11.50am Coffee Break

Language, Law and Classification

Noon Peter Candy (Cambridge), Class and Legal Development in the Late Republic

12.40pm Olivia Elder (Cambridge), Language and Class in the Roman World

1.10pm Lunch break

Class and Resistance

2.30pm Discussion Section: Crenshaw, Haider

3.30pm Andrew Marsham (Cambridge), Rebellions in the Nile Delta in the 8th and 9th Centuries CE

4.10pm Coffee Break

Class and Slavery

4.25pm Carlos García Mac Gaw (Universidad Nacional de La Plata), Class, class consciousness and identity: Comparative aspects with ancient slavery

5.05pm Nicole Gianella (Cornell), Slaves, Luxury, and Classification

Saturday 1 February

Class Reproduction

(Lightfoot Room, Old Divinity School)

Class, Kinship and Gender

9.30am Discussion section: Fraser, Beard

10.10am Irene Soto Marín (Basel), Class and Female Economic Performance in Late Antique Egypt

10.40am Damian Fernandez (Northern Illinois), Property and Family in the Visigothic Kingdom

11.20am Coffee Break

Class Subjectivity

11.30am Marcelo Campagno (Buenos Aires), Creating an elite in early Egypt (IV- III millennia BC)

12.10pm Julián Gallego (Buenos Aires), The Athenian dêmos as a class, the class as a political subject

12.50pm Final Roundtable

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