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Title: Role of craft practice in changing glass working traditions : the formation of glass vessels in the Classical and Hellenistic Mediterranean world
Author: Liardet, Frances
ISNI:       0000 0004 2751 7755
Awarding Body: Cardiff University
Current Institution: Cardiff University
Date of Award: 2011
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This study combines a theoretical modelling of dexterity with a practical apprenticeship in glass-working in order to examine a group of core-formed glass alabastra from Mediterranean Group I (c.525 to c.400 BCE). Core-formed vessels were made by forming glass around an internal mould which was scraped out after the vessel had cooled. The core-forming tradition lasted from c.1500 BCE until c.100 BCE. Mediterranean Group I is of interest because of the wide variety of consistency displayed in body shaping, rim and handle making, and decoration. To understand this variety it was necessary to undertake a theoretical and practical investigation of skill. The theoretical investigation revealed that skill has been conventionally analysed in terms of knowledge. This cognition-based analysis ignores the dimension of moving, specifically of the skilled gesture and the process of becoming dexterous. The practical apprenticeship demonstrated that this process, as a kinaesthetic experience, is value-positive - that is to say, it gives rise to value judgements on artefact feature, gesture in synergy with tools and materials, and craft working behaviour. This remodelling of skill allows one to form a gestural as opposed to a feature-based artefact typology and in so doing to identify, not simply distinct communities of practice, but different types of communities whose judgements arose out of the experience of becoming dexterous. Redefined in this way skilled making can be repositioned within archaeological theory as a central mode of interaction with the material world, a mode which has the intrinsic potential to generate value and social meaning.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available