The Individual and the Mycenaean State: Agency and Prosopography in the Linear B Texts from Pylos
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This dissertation examines the relationship between the individual and the state in the Mycenaean palatial period of Late Bronze Age Greece (ca. 1500-1200 BC). The standard view of the Mycenaean state is one of a static, impersonal bureaucracy with rigid structures of authority. The insights of agency theory, in contrast, suggest that the state is better described as a network of social and economic relationships created and maintained through the actions of individuals. A detailed prosopographical study of ca. 800 individuals named in the Linear B tablets from the "Palace of Nestor" at Pylos demonstrates that many named individuals in this Mycenaean state were active in multiple administrative and economic spheres, a situation not easily explained by bureaucratic models. Nakassis uses prosopographical analysis to re-interpret the Mycenaean palace-state at Pylos as a network of mutually-reliant individuals rather than a monolithic entity.
CitationNakassis, Dimitri. 2006. “The Individual and the Mycenaean State: Agency and Prosopography in the Linear B Texts from Pylos.” PhD Dissertation, The University of Texas at Austin.
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