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Title: Conflict archaeology in southern Jordan : Wadi Yutm and the Great Arab Revolt 1916-1918
Author: Scott, John M.
ISNI:       0000 0004 5917 1007
Awarding Body: University of Bristol
Current Institution: University of Bristol
Date of Award: 2015
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Using the theoretical and methodological framework of Modern Conflict Archaeology, this study investigated the 1916-1918 conflict, known as the Great Arab Revolt, in which the Sherifs of Mecca declared independence from the Ottoman Empire during the First World War. The study focused on Wadi Yutm, a mountain valley in southern Jordan fortified and occupied by the Ottoman army, which was the last leg of the pivotal capture of Aqaba by an Arab Revolt expedition. Aqaba's capture by an Arab force was significant not only for the Revolt and for Arab nationalism but also for the Allies' victory over the Ottomans in the First World War. This study, the first systematic archaeological investigation of modern conflict in Wadi Yutm and the first archaeological study of the entire valley, presents evidence that the Alawin Bedouin of Wadi Yutm played a pivotal role in advancing the Arab Revolt and its allies in the Middle Eastern theater. This underacknowledged evidence is elided in the sole written account, Lawrence's Seven Pillars of Wisdom, and nearly invisible in traditional histories. The valley contains extensive material culture spanning the Neolithic Period through the present. Within this palimpsest is a stratigraphy of conflict that extends from Nabataean-Roman times through today. These conflict strata are most prominent at key strategic topographic points in the landscape, indicating that a strong relationship exists between these points, strategic geography, and their military potential. This study captured a diversity of archaeological and anthropological data and overcame physical challenges imposed by difficult landscape through a variety of traditional fieldwork methods aided by a tailored technology. Moving through geographical, cultural, and social space, often simultaneously, required an awareness of the terrain, the possibility of conflict, and traditional Bedouin sensitivities. These tensions, however, were more than offset by the rich and insightful range of evidence encountered.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available