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Book: Local Experiences of Connectivity and Mobility in the Ancient West-Central Mediterranean

Chapter: 9. Isolation and Connectivity: The Maghrib and the Mediterranean in the 1st Millennium BC

DOI: 10.1558/equinox.44211


This chapter challenges current conceptions of connectivity and isolation as applied to the Maghrib region of North Africa. It argues that North Africa’s integration with the western Mediterranean during the entirety of the first millennium BC should not now be in question, despite recent assessments to the contrary. I draw on recent archaeological field research at Althiburos and other sites to demonstrate new evidence in areas of in feasting, fortifications, and funerary practices. More specifically, I reject the arguments that the region remained isolated from the rest of the Mediterranean until Phoenicians, Greeks, and Romans arrived. Instead, we can now identify interaction with the rest of the Mediterranean from the sixth millennium BC. My focus lies on key phases of interaction in the first millennium BC in which we should no longer regard Africans playing inferior roles.

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