New article on the formation and transformation of Philistine identity!

This morning, I received notice that an article by Louise Hitchcock, Liora Kolska Horwitz and yours truly, which we have been waiting for, for quite a while, has appeared!

The article presents our current views on the constitution and transformation of the Philistine identity in the Iron Age, based on recent finds at Tell es-Safi/Gath and in Philistia in general, and on the basis of what we believe is an up-to-date theoretical understanding of the processes of the formation, definition and transformation of ethnic identities.

The article is entitled:

Maeir, A. M., Hitchcock, L. A., and Kolska Horwitz, L. 2013. On the Constitution and Transformation of Philistine Identity. Oxford Journal of Archaeology 32(1): 1–38.


Here is the abstract:

Recent discussion of the formation and alteration of Philistine
identity in the Levantine Iron Age continues to reference primarily pottery
styles and dietary practices. Such traditional narratives propose that the
Philistines comprised one group of the ‘Sea Peoples’ and that the cultural
boundary markers that distinguished their society in the Iron Age I (twelfth–
eleventh century BC) diminished in importance and disappeared suddenly in
the early Iron Age IIA (tenth century BC), with the ascendancy of the Judahite
kingdom. Based on data from the Levant (especially Philistia), the Aegean and
Cyprus, we argue for a more complex understanding of the Philistines who
came to the region with an identity that drew on, and continued to engage with,
a broad range of foreign artefact styles and cultural practices with non-
Levantine connections. Concurrently they incorporated local cultural
attributes, at least until the late ninth century BC, a feature that we argue was
unrelated to the supposed tenth century expansion of the Judahite kingdom.

Check it out!


Nice little present for the new year and to keep me warm in snowy Jerusalem!