Alicia Jiménez

Duke University

Mimesis, transmission, power: archaeology of the Roman provinces

2017-2018: Fall

Alicia's research engages with archaeological theory and Roman visual and material culture, specifically in the western and central Mediterranean in the period 218 BCE-200 CE. During her junior sabbatical at Duke University, she will work on her new book project at the Italian Academy (Columbia University, New York, Fall Semester 2017) and the ANHIMA Research Center (UMR 8210, Anthropologie et Histoire des Mondes Antiques, Paris, Spring Semester 2018). The book investigates the relationship between mimesis, colonialism and material culture to better understand how shapes, images and objects are transmitted and replicated in (post)colonial contexts, using as a primary case study archaeological remains from the province of Hispania (modern Spain and Portugal). An archaeological theory of mimesis has the potential to offer new insights into why and how the Roman provinces resembled the metropolis (or not) during the early phases of the expansion of the Roman empire over the Mediterranean (2nd c. BCE – 1st c. CE) and the part played by seemingly homogenous material culture in imperialism.

Her first monograph, Imagines hibridae. A postcolonial approach to the study of the Baetican necropolis (2008, published in Spanish), analyzed the impact of Roman colonization in the funerary rituals of southern Spain and how different discourses about collective ancestry were simultaneously mediated in the forum and the tomb. Alicia has carried out archaeological fieldwork at various Iron Age, Hellenistic and Roman sites in the Iberian Peninsula and Italy. She co-directs the excavations at the Roman camps near Numantia (Renieblas, Spain, 2nd-1st c. BCE) since 2015. 

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