Use this URL to cite or link to this record in EThOS:
Title: Insular monument building : a cause of social stress? : the case of prehistoric Malta
Author: Clark, Jacob Daniel
ISNI:       0000 0001 3554 6095
Awarding Body: University of Bristol
Current Institution: University of Bristol
Date of Award: 1998
Availability of Full Text:
Access from EThOS:
Access from Institution:
Prehistoric monument building, particularly that on islands, is reviewed. The insularity and nature of island societies and the question of possible social stress arising from these activities is posed. The degree of stress must be quantified and the technique of energetics analysis is the best available. Prehistoric Malta is chosen for detailed examination of these questions. The island is first described, including its location, geography, geology, climate and extant remains, together with the cultural phases and possible structure of its society. The rationale of an energetics analysis is covered with several examples of its application and a justification of its utility for Malta. The Ggantija temple is chosen for particular study and detailed drawings of its remains are given. The architecture of the original temple is hypothesised and the materials involved quantified. For each material the unit labour costs of procurement (including the location of sources), transport, preparation and construction are estimated. By combining the quantities of materials used with the unit labour costs, the total labour requirements are computed. A sensitivity analysis, allowing for significant variation of all the important figures, is given. Previous work on labour requirements is reviewed and found to be a grave over-estimate. The prehistoric population numbers, and the availability of temple building workers, is estimated. Combinations of the figures for labour required and labour available allows estimates of the percentage demand on worker's time to be made, including a sensitivity analysis. These percentages give a quantified view of the stress which temple building placed on society. Contrary to previous suggestions embedded in the literature, no excessive stress is indicated. Further, there is no evidence of any concentration of building effort at the end of the period and it is unlikely that temple construction per se contributed to that culture's downfall. These are major conclusions and justify the use of energetics analysis and the work involved
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: Archaeology