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CALL. 30.09.2020: [PANEL 9] "Ageing bodies in Antiquity. Dependency and care" (CCAH) - Coi




LUGAR/LOCATION/LUOGO: Faculty of Arts and Humanities, University of Coimbra (Coimbra, Portugal)

ORGANIZADOR/ORGANIZER/ORGANIZZATORE: Agnès Garcia-Ventura (University Autònoma of Barcelona); Borja Méndez Santiago (University of Oviedo); Carla Rubiera Cancelas (University of Oviedo)

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Agnès Garcia-Ventura, Borja Méndez Santiago and Carla Rubiera Cancelas invite the submission of abstracts on any aspect of old age in Antiquity. While the study of childhood has enjoyed a greater presence in researcher’s interests, the same hasn't occurred in relation to old age. To name just some of the reference works, the well-known monographies of Tim Parkin (Old Age in the Roman World, 2003) and Karen Cokayne (Experiencing Old Age in Ancient Rome, 2003) despite only focusing on the analysis of Graeco-Roman literature, are seminal studies that have aroused great interest in old age in other scientific disciplines. A good display of this enthusiasm is the methodological reflection made by Jo Appleby in an interesting paper of 2017 (“Ageing and the Body in Archaeology”, Cambridge Archaeological Journal, 28, 1, 145-163) which can be used here as starting point for further discussion on the topic.

The organizers propose the study of ageing from a holistic perspective. In this sense, papers may explore any of the following, as well as related, themes:

- When is a man or a woman considered old? To what extent does chronological age matter?

- How do variables such as gender, wealth or social status affect the ageing process?

- The (in)visibility of old age in ancient sources.

- The tendency to make old age invisible in secondary sources, as well as bias in the way it is dealt with. What are the reasons for that? How can these scholarly trends be reversed?

- How is the body affected by the deterioration process that takes place during old age? What are the challenges of facing old age in the ancient world? How did families respond to ageing? Was a restructuration of roles necessary? How is dependency managed within the family units? What emotional implications does it involve? How did intergenerational relationships evolve?

- Were there public measures to mitigate some of the effects of ageing? What kind of modifications can be seen in the legal system in relation to the elderly? Does this jurisprudence or legislation simply seek to protect these elders or, on the contrary, is what prevails the maintenance and proper functioning of society? What traces of these strategies can we find in other documents such as administrative ones?

We would be interested in collecting proposals of specialists from any chronological and spatial framework related to past ancient societies. Thus, we will consider contributions related to history, archaeology, epigraphy, numismatics, history of art, law and any other disciplines that can contribute to a better understanding of old age in Antiquity.

Timeline and Deadlines:

  1. 250 word abstracts are due to 12 PM Friday, September 30, 2020.

  2. The proposals can be sent in Portuguese, Spanish and English to

​Abstracts should have:

- Title of communication

- E-mail

- University

- Abstracts (max 250 words)

- Keywords (5 to 10 words)

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