Distinction and affinity. The dualism of foreign features in the MBA Levantine palatialarchitecture
The Middle Bronze Age in the Near East was a period of particular commercial and political developments. Numerous polities rose in the Levant as a result of internal and external triggers. The material culture and finds from this area, which had no fixed boundaries or clear identity, reveals a continuous and vibrant interaction and exchange with the stronger surrounding cultures. This is clearly reflected in the architecture of the excavated palaces. A mélange of local and foreign features could be identified: Aegean frescoes, Egyptianizing wall paintings, Mesopotamian architecture and Anatolian building technique. The architecture of these palaces was used by the Levantine Elites to communicate their political power and reach to their peers. But what was the intention and motivation of the various elites to integrate selected foreign features in the architecture and decoration of their palaces? This paper seeks to answer this question by identifying the preferences and the choices of foreign styles and features. Through defining the local or regional trends, some insights are gained about the nature of the relationship between the Levantine polities and their neighbors, and the various zones of influence.
EUT Edizioni Università di Trieste
Nathalie Kallas, "Distinction and affinity. The dualism of foreign features in the MBA Levantine palatialarchitecture", in: Marco Iamoni (Edited by), "From the Prehistory of Upper Mesopotamia to the Bronze and Iron Age Societies of the Levant. Volume 1. Proceedings of the 5th “Broadening Horizons” Conference (Udine 5-8 June 2017)", Trieste, EUT Edizioni Università di Trieste, 2020, pp. 239-255