Biweekly Colloquia: "Time in Three Dimensions"

Dec 04, 2023 from 04:15 PM to 05:45 PM

Olshausenstraße 40, R. 13

Gavin Lucas - University of Iceland

"Time in Three Dimensions"
One of the more significant issues to emerge from the Anthropocene discourse has been the apparent incommensurability of human and natural history and the vastly different timescales involved. More generally, it raises critical questions about the very different way time is conceptualized in the natural sciences as opposed to the social sciences and humanities. This paper seeks to contribute to these issues and build bridges between the two disciplinary domains by foregrounding the materiality of time. It uses a partly allegorical approach inspired by Edwin Abbott’s nineteenth century novel Flatland to investigate a notion of three-dimensional of time. The paper argues for the concept of thick time, which emphasizes the importance of time as constituted by things, whereby things make time rather than exist within it. I also explore the implications of this for the role of narrative in archaeology.

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