The Iranian Highlands:

Resiliences and Integration in Pre-modern Societies

A cooperation among the DFG, RICHT/ICAR and MCTH
Funded in the framework of the DFG-SPP 2176

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Coordination Programme

Applicant: Professor Dr. Thomas Stöllner
Deutsches Bergbau-Museum (DBM)
Forschungsstelle Archäologie und Materialwissenschaft
Forschungsbereich Montanarchäologie
Subject Area: Prehistory
Egyptology and Ancient Near Eastern Studies
Term: since 2019
Project identifier: Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (DFG) - Projekt number 424829690

Project Description

The Iranian highlands played a significant role in cultural developments in the Near East throughout the history of the region. Its societies interacted closely with neighboring cultures to which they repeatedly developed political and economic ties. From the perspective of Mesopotamia, the Caucasus and Middle Asia, intensified relationships with the Iranian highlands developed again and again, whether through economic activities, migration or political inclusion. From their side, Iranian highland societies were able to integrate these relationships into their own networks as well as to modify or resist them. The highlands and its actors were thereby periodically able to play a formative role in relation to their surroundings and to effect political, economic and social changes. For many periods, the landscapes, their resources and the specific living conditions contributed to these developments, yet the underlying cultural, social and economic processes have barely been investigated; instead, they have often remained in the shadows cast by an external perspective, in particular a Mesopotamian one. Investigations within SPP-projects shall be based on three fields of research: raw material regimes, institutional relationships and mobility of the inhabitants. Various forms of crisis management and resilience, but also the integrative potential are core elements of these highland societies. These will be investigated and diachronically compared by help of the coordination project of the SPP: The various scientific results shall be condensed by six work packages that range from a data-base and Web-GIS-project, to a joint analytical strategy, a series of works-shops and conferences as well as to an integration of Iranian scholars and foreign fellows to our program. It is an explicit goal of the coordination project to develop and support mutuality with Iranian colleagues and institution in order to develop joint scientific goals and results within the project.