Vivid sources for reconstructing the lives of Assyrian women
In this collection Cécile Michel translates into English texts related to wives and daughters of merchants and to their activities in nineteenth-century BCE Aššur and Kaneš. Discovered in excavations of the Old Assyrian private archives at Kültepe (ancient Kaneš) in Central Anatolia, these letters sent from Aššur reflect the preeminent role of Assyrian women within the family and in the domestic economy, as well as their contribution to long-distance trade. Contracts and other legal texts excavated at Kültepe attest to Assyrian and Anatolian women as parties in marriage and divorce contracts, last wills, loans, and purchase contracts. These unique finds paint a vivid portrait of women who aspire to be socially respected and provide a rare opportunity to reconstruct their daily lives as both businesswomen and housewives.
More than three hundred letters and documents transliterated and translated with commentary
An overview of the study of women and gender in Assyriology
A reconstruction of women's roles as textile producers, investors, and creditors within a long-distance commercial network
Cécile Michel is Senior Researcher at the National Center for Scientific Research (CNRS, France) and Professor at Hamburg University (Germany). She is a member of the international group of scholars in charge of the decipherment of the 23,000 tablets found at Kültepe (ancient Kaneš) and of the Kültepe archaeological team. She is the coeditor of and contributor to The Role of Women in Work and Society in the Ancient Near East (2016), Textile Terminologies from the Orient to the Mediterranean and Europe, 1000 BC to 1000 AD (2017), and Mathematics, Administrative and Economic Activities in Ancient Worlds (2020).
Archival research of any magnitude can be daunting. With this in mind, Alexis E. Ramsey, Wendy B. Sharer, Barbara L’Eplattenier, and Lisa Mastrangelo have developed an indispensable volume for the first-time researcher as well as the seasoned scholar. Working in the Archives is a guide to the world of rhetoric and composition archives, from locating an archival source and its materials to establishing one’s own collection of archival materials. This practical volume provides insightful information on a variety of helpful topics, such as basic archival theory, processes, and principles; the use of hidden or digital archives; the intricacies of searching for and using letters and photographs; strategies for addressing the dilemmas of archival organization without damaging the provenance of materials; the benefits of seeking sources outside academia; and the difficult (yet often rewarding) aspects of research on the Internet.
Working in the Archives moves beyond the basics to discuss the more personal and emotional aspects of archival work through the inclusion of interviews with experienced researchers such as Lynée Lewis Gaillet, Peter Mortensen, Kathryn Fitzgerald, Kenneth Lindblom, and David Gold. Each shares his or her personal stories of the joys and challenges that face today’s researchers.
Packed with useful recommendations, this volume draws on the knowledge and experiences of experts to present a well-rounded guidebook to the often winding paths of academic archival investigation. These in-depth yet user-friendly essays provide crucial answers to the myriad questions facing both fledgling and practiced researchers, making Working in the Archives an essential resource.