par Cranshof, Els ;Nikis, Nicolas ;de Maret, Pierre
Référence GAPSYM9 "Trading places: the role of trade with Africa" (17-12-2015: Gand)
Publication Non publié, 2015-12-17
Poster de conférence
Résumé : Within the Kongo kingdom area, several particularly elaborate pottery styles, chronologically situated between the 14th and 17th centuries, are found. Although belonging to different groups, all these ceramics share a decorative language with other aspects of material culture like basketry, textiles and even metal objects. Apart from being inspired by woven designs, they are also relatively rare and rather labour intensive. Their intricate ornamentations give them an ostentatious character. This suggests that they were either directly associated with the polity’s elite and the processes of political centralization and economic integration which they encouraged or imitations of the elite’s objects of wealth. Contact-induced centre-periphery dynamics within the kingdom have already been identified in Kongo historical language data (1). Comparing these ceramic decoration styles with their counterparts on woven artefacts can give us more insight into the influence of prestigious goods on other aspects of material culture.(1) Bostoen, Koen and de Schryver, Gilles-Maurice (2015), 'Linguistic innovation, political centralization and economic integration in the Kongo kingdom: Reconstructing the spread of prefix reduction', Diachronica, 32 (2), 139-85.