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Minoan Archaeology

 | 
Sarah Cappel
, 
Ute Günkel-Maschek
, 
Diamantis Panagiotopoulos

Peer Pressure: Social Structures from a “Minoan” Perspective

Social Complexity and Gender Inequality in Prepalatial Crete

An Argument of Reason or a Reason for Argument?*

Maria Mina

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This article explores the validity of models that explain gender asymmetries as an effect of growing social hierarchy in Prepalatial Crete. In order to disentangle the idea that gender inequalities constitute part of the path to social complexity, it is necessary to deconstruct unilinear models that credit escalating social hierarchy of Prepalatial society with the emergence of palaces. It is argued that social hierarchy is not an adequate gauge by which to measure social complexity or assess how social groups relate to one another. It is proposed instead that exploring the phenomena of heterarchy and homoarchy in prehistoric societies shifts our focus to social dynamics as indicators of social complexity. It is concluded that in the EM I and II phases it is possible to distinguish between cultural regions which were characterised by varying degrees of heterarchical traits that allowed gender groups to assume positions of status in relevant social contexts. Evidence for increasing h...

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© Presses universitaires de Louvain, 2015

Conditions d’utilisation : http://www.openedition.org/6540

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