Les actes de culte comme marqueurs des transitions historiques: le problème du passage de l’époque mycénienne à l’époque archaïque dans le monde grec
Karine Rivière In C. Müller & M. Heintz (eds) 2016. Transitions historiques. Colloques de la Maison de l’Archéologie et de l’Ethnologie, René Ginouvés 12, Paris: 57-67.
Scholars have established a classical chronology for the study of Greek history from the 14th down to the end of the 6th century BC. It distinguishes three movements, the Mycenaean period, a set of centuries to which diverse names are given, and the Archaic period. Trying to determine whether such periodization is accurate to write a history of cult practices leads to question the accuracy of the very concept of periodization for an object that would be characterized by a constant dialectics between permanence and evolution. In fact, to write a history of cults that would embrace a long period of time, for which documentation appears diverse and discontinuous, “slicing” chronology seems to be less appropriate than intermingling transitional period composed of legacies and innovations, which may or may not be conveyed to the following centuries. Defining a period as a geometrical intersection of different sets of movements helps towards a better analysis of polysemic phenomena, and of interactions between distinct phenomena.