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Title: Hybrid waterscapes : an examination of meaning-laden waterflow in the towns of Roman Britain
Author: Ingate, Jay
ISNI:       0000 0004 5351 1787
Awarding Body: University of Kent
Current Institution: University of Kent
Date of Award: 2014
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In the past twenty years there has been a sustained theoretical challenge to issues of Roman identity in the western provinces. However, despite this body of work, the towns of Roman Britain are still primarily defined by the extent to which they embraced a set of supposedly Mediterranean urban features. This research uses the medium of water to thoroughly explore the reasons behind this approach and the disparity it has created in respect to studies of prehistory. While water is undoubtedly a thread of continuity in human settlement, scholars of the Roman period have been particularly concerned with outlining its urban utilisation as a sign of familiarity, or shared civilisation, between the Roman period and modernity. Subsequently, Roman era structures related to water (such as aqueducts, wells, bridges and bathhouses) have been portrayed as examples of a cultural advancement that was distinct from previous activity within the immediate landscape. This approach has therefore discounted the rich and powerful associations pertaining to water throughout the temperate European prehistory. Through analysis of twenty one of the most influential Roman towns of Britain, this thesis shows how local beliefs would have been an integral part of how one perceived and experienced urban water features. It will be emphasised that the entanglement between these associations and complex, but receptive, incoming cultural influences would have played a key role in creating hybrid waterscapes within these settlements. Fully acknowledging this complex cultural presence of water underlines how the experience of towns in Roman Britain was a product of a number of different perspectives; meaning these places cannot be fully understood without a careful consideration of local context.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: CB History of civilization ; CC Archaeology