[URBANTH-L]Second CFP: Hierarchy and Power in the History of Civilizations

Angela Jancius acjancius at ysu.edu
Wed Apr 13 17:45:17 EDT 2005

June 13-16 2006, Moscow, Russia
Deadline for submissions: November 1, 2005
Visit the website at http://www.civreg.ru/english/conf/hierarchy2006.html

30/1 Spiridonovka St., 123001 Moscow, RUSSIA
Tel.: + (7 095) 291 4119; Fax: + (7 095) 202 0786
E-mail: civ-reg at inafr.ru
and the

30/1 Spiridonovka St., 123001 Moscow, RUSSIA
Tel.: + (7 095) 291 4119; Fax: + (7 095) 202 0786
6, Miusskaya Ploshad' 125267 Moscow, RUSSIA
Tel.: + (7 095) 298 5886; Fax: + (7 095) 298 0345

Center for Civilizational and Regional Studies in cooperation with the
Institute for African Studies (both under the Russian Academy of Sciences)
and the Russian State University for the Humanities is organizing in Moscow
on June 13-16, 2006 the Fourth International Conference "HIERARCHY AND POWER
All the Conference events except culture program will take place on the
Russian State University for the Humanities main campus.

The working languages of the Conference are Russian and English.  The
deadline for paper proposals (in the form of abstracts within 300 words in
English) is November 1, 2005. Paper proposals should be sent not to the
Organ-izing Committee but directly to the respective panel convenor(s) who
is (are) to inform the applicant about his (her) application's fortune by
December 1, 2005. The information to be submitted alongside with the paper
abstract includes full name, title, institutional affiliation, full mail and
e-mail addresses, and fax #.  In the case you feel your paper does not fit
any particular panel but corresponds to the Conference's general theme, you
may submit your proposal to the Organizing Committee and it will be
considered for scheduling for the Free Communication Panel.  All the general
inquiries and proposals for the Free Communication Panel should be sent to
the Organizing Committee, to the attention of Ms. Anastasia Banschikova,
Conference Secretary preferably by e-mail (civ-reg at inafr.ru), or either by
fax (+ 7 095 202 0786), or by ordinary mail (Center for Civilizational and
Regional Studies, Russian Academy of Sciences, 30/1 Spiridonovka St., 123001
Moscow, Russia). The telephone number is: + 7 095 291 4119.

The Conference participant’s registration fee is 100 euros (or the
equivalent sum in US dollars or Russian rubles) which includes the visa
application support at the Russian Foreign Ministry, culture program,
Conference Book of Abstracts, reception, coffee-breaks, is to be paid on the
spot upon arrival. The fee for an accompanying person is 50 euros (or the
equivalent sum in US dollars or Russian rubles) includes the visa
application support at the Russian Foreign Ministry, participation in
culture program and reception.

PANELS ACCEPTED FOR THE CONFERENCE (In the alphabetical order of titles):

Europe as Political and Cultural Entity: Dialogue of Civilizations or
Civilization of Dialogue?
Convenors: Dr. Ekaterina B. Demintseva (Department of Cultural Anthropology,
Center for Civilizational and Regional Studies, Russian Academy of Sciences,
30/1 Spiridonovka st., 123001 Moscow, Russia; Tel.: + 7 095 291 4119; Fax: +
7 095 202 07 86; E-mail: katia-d at yandex.ru); Timour Atnachev (European
University Institute, Florence, Italy; E-mail: timour.atnachev at iue.it)

The current enlargement of the European Union makes acute even more than
before the question of where do the borders of Europe lie? The question has
two dimensions: political and cultural. Dealing with both or any of the
aspects presupposes choosing one of the two lines of reasoning: Europe may
be considered either as a field of interaction of a number of civilizations
or as one though internally highly diversified civilization. Finally, do the
frontiers of Europe as a political and cultural entity co-insides with the
continent's geographical borders? Anthropology, History, Political and
Social sciences offer different perspectives to answer these questions, and
we invite specialists in these (and other) disciplines to their discussion.
Paper proposals may tackle such problems as social, political, and cultural
exchanges in Europe in past and present, formation of the European political
system and institution and national political cultures, integration of
infra-European and non-European immigrants into the European countries'
societies and cultures, the possibility of national and ethnic cultures'
dissolution in the process of European integration, as well as any other
aspects relevant to the panel's general problematics.
Hierarchical Structures and Local Network Communities in the Muslim World
Convenors: Galina A. Khizriyeva (School of History, Political Science and
Law, Russian State University for the Humanities, Moscow; E-mail:
khizriyeva at yahoo.com); Dr. Igor L. Alexeev (School of History, Political
Science and Law, Russian State University for the Humanities, Moscow;
E-mail: ialexeev at mail.ru)

The modern state is based оn two key principles. They are internal hierarchy
and external autonomy. But internal hierarchy of many polities traditionally
includes internal network communities that can compete with internal
hierarchical systems of the state, influence and even corrode it. The
process depends on the character of interrelations between the two
organizational principles – political hierarchy and network in which
hierarchy is loose and situational. As a result, a state can undergo the
process of its weakening and become an arena for a political crisis and
conflicts. Within the framework of the panel we would like to discuss the
problematic mentioned above with respect to different types of contemporary
Muslim states, societies and communities. However, cases from any part of
the world and of any historical period relevant to the problem of state
emergency out of network communities or vice versa are welcome.

Hierarchy and Power before and after Revolutions
Convenor: Dr. Bahram Navazeni (P.O. Box 288, Department of Political
Science, Imam Khomeini International University, Qazvin 34149-16818, Iran;
Tel/Fax: 98 281 367 9092; Fax: 98 281 378 0035; E-mail:
navazenib at ikiu.ac.ir)

The history of mankind has witnessed various types of state systems in which
the main subject has always been the distribution of power. In each type,
ancient or modern, theocratic or democratic, despotic or pluralistic,
different classes and groups have played different roles either in
supporting or opposing the power which might have some relation to a
particular context of cultural, religious, social and economic power.
Classes such as nobles, clergies, bourgeoisie, proletariats and peasants,
and groups such as patriots, zealots, and nationalists may insist on their
will and not ease until the revolution and the collapse of the whole system.
But even when revolutionaries come to power, they find the distribution of
power among themselves and with the opposition as the first task, so the
game still continues. Covering a large area of the political science field,
this panel encourages political scientists, sociologists, historians and all
the others interested in the nature of the old or modern state, and the
power it wields to use historical and contemporary material to illustrate
the theoretical analysis and different and changing will and need of the
ruling vs. revolutionary groups and classes. Papers on the Russian, Persian,
British, American, Turk, Arab, Indian, Chinese, African and other
revolutions in the past and present will surely be appreciated in this
panel. I invite the interested participants to discuss the causes of revolts
and revolutions and to find a way to ease tensions in the civilization as a

Human Rights in the History of Civilizations
Convenor: Dr. Pattamaporn Busapathumrong (Department of Humanities and
Social Sciences, Faculty of Liberal Arts, Asian University, 89 Moo 12
Highway 331, Banglamung, Chon Buri 20260, Thailand; Tel.: +66 1 8153054;
Fax: +66 38 754 447; E-mails: pattama at asianust.ac.th; pattama15 at yahoo.com)

The panel on human rights in history and civilization focuses on exploring
how the economic, political and socio-cultural factors have influenced the
conception, definitions and the emergence of human rights in history and
civilization. This involves social processes in historical dimension
concerning human rights in the areas of human rights violation and the
development of human rights instrument (written and unwritten codes) such as
traumas among those who experience human rights violation, grassroot
movements, peace movements, civil society, legal frameworks and instruments,
the role of government, non-government and international organizations. To
what extent that power strategies vs. stages of political evolution, the
ideology and legitimation of power in different civilizational contexts play
key role in history and civilization including violence and non-violence in
the history of political institution, formation, development and decline;
hierarchy and heterarchy in the sociopolitical history of humankind.

Interpreting Violence: The Confessional, the National, the Generational, and
the Personal
Convenor: Dr. Charles Rheaume (Directorate of History and Heritage, National
Defense Headquarters, 2429, Holly Lane, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada K1A 0K2;
Fax: +1 613 990 85 79, E-mails: rheaume.cc at forces.gc.ca;
crheau at sympatico.ca)

The theme and title of the panel are shaped the way which permits to welcome
papers on a great variety of particular topics related to any country and
historical period. Currently, the confirmed or prospective participants
intend to discuss such problems as the attitude towards the use of force in
the Judaic tradition, essentially that such use is not compatible with that
faith; Canada's self-image as a non-violent nation through the historical
example of Canada's decision not to develop a nuclear bomb of its own after
the Second World War, and its eagerness in engaging in peacekeeping missions
across the world as early as the late 1940s; the interpretation of violence
in Stalinist Russia; the phenomenon of violence as seen through today's
Russian youth; and the inner process by which Danish physicist Niels Bohr
was led from taking part in building up the ultimate means of violence that
nuclear weapons are to advocating their international control.

Modern Mass Media and the Public Sphere: New Challenges and Opportunities
for Democracy

Convenor: Dr. Veronica V. Usacheva (Department of Cultural Anthropology,
Center for Civilizational and Regional Studies, Russian Academy of Sciences,
30/1 Spiridonovka st., 123001 Moscow, Russia; Tel.: + 7 095 291 4119; Fax: +
7 095 202 07 86; E-mails: veronius at mail, veronius at rambler.ru)

Globalization has created new challenges in information space. New models of
communication have emerged. Their influence overcomes states’ borders and,
what is even more serious, they have a great potential and capabilities for
destroying the basis and cultural values of a society. In the classical
interpretation by Jürgen Habermas the “public sphere” is the arena within
which a debate occurs. It is the zone where access to information is
sufficient for more probable rational discourse and looking for mutually
acceptable public standards. The public sphere is where ideas, information
and knowledge are shared, where ideas generated and opinions are
constructed. Although real and experienced, the public sphere cannot be
located in a particular place or identified as an object. It is not a
physical spot where discourse has consequences. For Habermas, correctly
functioning public sphere restricts state power and gives possibilities
through which democracy could be realized. Ideally, the public sphere should
be free from limitations, both private interests and state control. Nowadays
the public sphere as a zone of modern discourse is distorted by unequal
access to information, power and prosperity. What is the role of modern mass
media in the public sphere's formation? What possibilities do they offer
citizens to seek, receive, and impart information? How do mass media provide
equal access to them for different social groups and individuals? Is equal
access possible in the modern world? During the 20th century the state
became a serious player on the public sphere stage, being sometimes
authoritarian or totalitarian monopolist. Information control can serve as a
part and parcel of nation-building. At the same time, media manipulation can
become a weapon of mass deconstruction. What kind of public sphere can exist
in the situation of increasing influence of the state and economic interests
on mass media? Where is the solution to overcome the elitist character of
the public sphere? The progress of communications gives new opportunities
for people to overcome limitations and deficiencies, even social norms and
social control. The many point out that new mass media are revolutionizing
the nature of discourse. The crucial question is: Do people receive now more
information than before? Do we have more zones for public discourse, than
before? Are there any new possibilities for broad and unlimited freedom of
expression, including critical to authorities? The panel will cover both
theoretical and empirical approaches to the mentioned above problems and
encourages papers that deal with the following: public sphere / public
sphericules; modern mass media in maintenance the institutions of civil
societies and democracy; public discourses, their competition and
hierarchical relations.

Networked Cultures: Negotiating Cultural Difference in Contested Spaces
Convenor: Prof. Peter Mörtenböck (Department of Visual Cultures, Goldsmiths
College, University of London, New Cross, London SE14 6NW, United Kingdom;
E-mail: p.mortenbock at gold.ac.uk)

This panel aims to discuss the dynamics and potentials of newly emerging
socio-political network structures and the ways in which they
re-conceptualise socio-political organisation through innovative forms of
spatial practice. It looks at contemporary spatial practices characterised
by a dislocation and dispersion of contributors, participants and
spectators, by processes of fragmentation and multiplication, by a shifting
of perspectives from dominant centralities to networked peripheries,
clandestine economies and virtual sites. In doing so, this panel intends to
question the ways in which the local is reinstalled as a new sphere of
activities which can only be understood through its network of relationships
with other localities. Albeit an increasingly fictitious construct, urban
space continues to be a central site of negotiation between conflicting
cultural histories, narratives and values in Europe and between Europe and
other world regions. Call centres, for instance, create the illusion of
speaking to someone geographically close to the location of the client, they
create a sense of ‘hereness’, whereas for economic reasons more and more
call centres of the Western world are relocated to Asia. Territorial
boundaries are both being undermined and upheld as is the case in the
recently proposed building of Austrian prisons in Rumania or the British
border controls on French territory. Both the contested geography and the
contested imaginary described in these and in many other instances are
indicative of a rapidly growing fragmentation and attempted re-stabilisation
of space formed in and by the projection of dominant cultural narratives.
These power moves challenge our traditional understanding of cities as sites
of actual exchange: The exchange between communities is not bound to a
material site any longer, it rather develops into a site of migratory
co-existence and cross-cultural networking. What is at stake in these newly
emerging communities of fleeting identifications and chance encounters is a
new way of thinking through the problematics of an illusory ‘hereness’ in
relation to an illusory ‘thereness’. A crucial question addressed here is
the extent to which we actually participate in these complexities of
socio-political organisation and how we relate to concepts and images
produced by culturally specific groups to which we belong or to which we do
not belong. As participation can no longer be restricted to instruments such
as memberships, polls and questionnaires, we have to look at new modes in
which collectivities (contact zones, nodes of intensities and communities)
are developed. How do new forms of communication and representation, in
particular virtual-spatial ones, change the social spaces where different
cultures meet? How do public fantasies interact with the actual living
conditions of citizens? How do constructions of an illusory ‘hereness’
relate to constructions of a similarly illusory ‘thereness? Contributions to
this panel will consider different spaces of contested nature: spaces which
exhibit or call for the potentiality of new forms of cohabitation and
cross-cultural fertilisation. It will investigate how such networked
cultures reflect and generate new epistemological models and intends to
critically assess their potential for cultural dialogue.

Power and Identity in Multicultural Societies

Convenor: Prof. Vassili R. Filippov (Department of Ethnoregional Studies,
Center for Civilizational and Regional Studies, Russian Academy of Sciences,
30/1 Spiridonovka St., 123001 Moscow, Russia; Tel.: + 7 095 202 3311; Fax: +
7 095 202 0786; E-mail: fvr at east.ru)

The panel is to consider the power and ethnicity interactions in political
practice of contemporary multiethnic states and quasi-states. The following
issues are to be discussed: the problem of ethnic groups as subjects of the
law: collective rights of substantiated ethnic groups vs. the individual's
right for free choice of ethno-cultural identity; political practice of the
ethnic processes optimization in multicultural states; forms of realization
of the individual’s ethno-cultural identity in multicultural states; the
ways of ethnicity's depolitization and politics' deethnization in
multiethnic societies; paradigmatics of contemporary ethnological science
and ideological substantiation of the ethnocratic regimes' legitimation;
ethnic models of power legitimation in political practice of contemporary
states and quasi-states.

Power and Ideology in the Northern Maya Lowlands
Convenor: Prof. Justine M. Shaw (College of the Redwoods, Anthropology
Section, 7351 Tompkins Hill Road, Eureka, CA 95501, USA; Tel.: + 1 707 476
4322; Fax: + 1 707 476 4430; E-mail: justine-shaw at redwoods.edu)

The Northern Yucatan, including much of the modern Mexican states of
Quintana Roo, Yucatan, and Campeche, has been the location of a series of
recent and ongoing archaeological projects. Some of the primary objectives
of these ventures have been to simply locate and date settlements in the
region, due to the paucity of prior research and the pressing need to
document sites that are increasingly threatened by modern development.
However, sustained investigations are beginning to allow archaeologists to
test hypotheses concerning the roles of past ideologies in structuring and
legitimizing power, the nature of political organization, and the role of
economy in socio-political processes. While the past and present occupants
of the Northern Lowlands are commonly referred to as the "Maya", this label
belies the cultural diversity within the region, as well as the enormous
amount of culture change that has taken place during the approximately 2,500
years covered by studies in the region. One area in which these changes are
most evident is that of ideologies, which have been continuously manipulated
by a series of powers within the region, starting from the first kings
through Spanish colonial times to the present. Even where writing is not
present, archaeologists have been able to call upon architecture, art, and
the distribution of relatively common artifacts in order to make inferences
about the cosmological programs of particular factions. While kingship is
assumed to be the norm for ancient Maya political organization, an
examination of the scale and distribution of settlement within the Northern
Lowlands makes it clear that, if such kings were the leaders of sites, they
were not all equal. Settlement pattern shifts through time reveal certain
centers, which might be called regional capitals, which were able to attract
substantial populations, while others retained little-to-no residents.
Examinations of the distribution of artifact types and architectural styles
provide insights into the actual areas that such rulers might have
controlled, the strategies that they used to attract and retain followers,
and the degree to which their leadership extended into economic realms.

Status, Society and Accusation: Forms of Accusation and Inquisition from
Antiquity to Renaissance

Convenor: Dr. Nadezhda A. Selonskaia (Center for Comparative Studies of
Ancient Civilizations, Institute of World History, Russian Academy of
Sciences, 32a Leninskii pr., apt. 1501, 119334 Moscow, Russia; Fax: + 7 095
938 1912; E-mails: spes at dr.com spesbona at mail.ru)

The panel is to deal with the concepts of culpa, accusation and inquisition
in a number of political and social contexts. It intends to analyze the
variability of perceptions, representations, and interactions of the secular
and sacred components of these concepts. The goal is also to demonstrate the
role written and oral forms and performances of the process of accusations
and the possible evidence of historical sources can play in interpretation
of the phenomena. The final goal is to indicate the specific features of the
concepts of culpa and accusation not only from the history of law
perspective, but also to analyze the phenomena in the context of social
hierarchy, with attention given to the secular and religious conflicts and
the interests of society's members. Paper proposals are to be focused first
and foremost on the world of Antiquity, Medieval Latin West and Byzantine
Empire, and the Renaissance. However, the framework of the panel could
include not just pagan Antiquity and Christian European civilization but
also a broader historical context of the Mediterranean world.

Structure of Power and Hierarchy in the Chinggis Khan Empire: A
Cross-Cultural Perspective
Convenor: Prof. Nikolay N. Kradin (Institute of History, Archaeology and
Ethnography, Far Eastern Branch of the Russian Academy of Sciences, 89
Pushkinskaya st., Vladivostok 690950, Russia; Tel.: +7 4232 228 067; Fax: +7
4232 268 211; E-mail: kradin at mail.ru)
The problem of the Mongols' conquests and the place of the Chinggis Khan
empire in the world-system history received new sounding in the last decade.
Activation of its studying is connected with approximation of the 800th
anniversary of the Mongolian empire's declaration in 1206. The fundamental
problem to be discussed in the panel is the structure of power and hierarchy
in the Chinggis Khan empire. The other points for discussion are: Why did
the Mongols rise from a small, little-known people to a powerful empire
which became able to destroy a number of mediaeval civilizations? What role
did Chinggis Khan play in these processes? What were the reasons for
creation of the Mongolian empire and other nomadic empires? What was the
basis of Chinggis Khan's power? What were the features of the Mongols and
other nomadic empires' structure of hierarchy? Was the Mongol empire a state
or a supercomplex chiefdom? Finally, What part did the Mongol empire play in
the world-system processes?

The Cossack Communities, Identity and Power on the Eurasian Space in the
16th – 20th Centuries

Convenor: Dr. Sergey M. Markedonov (Department of Interethnic Relations
Problems, Institute for Political and Military Analysis, 20/6, bldg. 1
Kuznetskiy Most St., 107031 Moscow, Russia; E-mail: smark at pochta.ru;
smark-72 at mail.ru)

During the last 10 or 15 years the history of the Cossacks has been arising
a considerable interest of both academics and politicians. It is manifested
in numerous publications and conferences on the Cossacks. The conferences
have revealed the subjects, dealt with the history of the Cossacks,
predominantly in the context of the events in this or that separate region
(Ukraine, the Caucasus, Siberia, the Far East) or in the context of military
or socio-economic history. Moreover, the Cossacks are considered as a
completely Russian historical phenomenon, while the Cossack communities
existed not only on the territory of contemporary Russia and within the
boundaries of so called “Slavic area” but also as a part of the Crimea
Khanate, the Ottoman Empire, Qing China. Thus, it is possible to ascertain
that in the public and academy there are still absent an integral notion of
the Cossack phenomenon and its evolution, a typology of the Cossack
communities, etc. The main purpose of the proposed panel is to accumulate
papers on the history of the Cossacks given in the vein of the civilization
approach and regarding the regional factor, implying the research emphasis
on the interrelationship between the individual/community and the state, on
the specific features of culture (in the ethnographic and civil-national
meanings) and psychology, on spatial and symbolic geography, etc. within the
chronological frameworks from stable Cossack communities formation in the
16th century to the 20th century, the period when the Cossacks existed in
different language and cultural milieu (in the Soviet Union and in
emigration) and enjoyed revival in the post-Soviet states. The following
points for discussion may be outlined: the political and judicial
institutions of the Cossacks and their evolution; the relations between the
Cossack communities and the Moscow state, Russian Empire, Ottoman Empire,
Poland-Lithuania, etc.; the Cossacks as a phenomenon of intercultural
dialogue (the history of non-Slavic ethnic component in the Cossack
communities); the image of the Cossacks in history (cultural stereotypes of
their perception by other peoples); self-identification of the Cossacks, the
mechanisms of its transmission, the ghosts of the Cossacks’ “nationalism”
and separatism; the Cossacks as a political myth and political ideal in
social thought of Russia, Ukraine, and other European states; the “Cossack
question” in the official policy and public opinion of the Russian Empire in
the 19th – early 20th centuries, contemporary Russia and other post-Soviet

The Olmecs of Mesoamerica: Studies in Power and Hierarchy

Convenors: Prof. Richard A. Diehl (Box 870210, Department of Anthropology,
University of Alabama, Tuscaloosa, AL 35487-0210, USA; Fax: + 1 205 348
7937; E-mail: rdiehl at tenhoor.as.ua.edu); Dr. Andrei V. Tabarev (Institute of
Archaeology and Ethnography, Novosibirsk University, 17 Lavrentieva St.,
Novosibirsk, 630090, Russia; E-mail: olmec at yandex.ru)

The Olmecs were the first civilization to emerge in pre-Columbian America.
Although they have long been famous for their spectacular Colossal Heads and
other stone monuments carved from multi-ton basalt boulders, until recently
little was known about the social, political, and economic underpinnings of
this civilization. Recent archaeological and iconographic studies have
revealed a wealth of data on these and many related topics. They will be
addressed by the panel members.

The Ruler and Socio-Cultural Norm in the Ancient World
Convenor: Dr. Alexander A. Nemirovskiy (Center for Comparative Studies of
Ancient Civilizations, Institute of World History, Russian Academy of
Sciences, 32a Leninskiy pr., 119334 Moscow, Russia; Fax: + 7 095 938 1912;
E-mails: sidelts at inbox.ru; alexandre_029 at yahoo.com; alexandre_092 at yahoo.com)

The panel is designed to bring together papers on a rather specific topic.
One of the main questions we face while studying the phenomenon of hierarchy
as a means of society's (self)organization is redistribution of activities
and competence (both nominal and real) between rulers on the one hand and
the whole society on the other hand, especially with respect to the problem
of how social norms are maintained, modified and introduced. Every society
functions according to some rules, guaranteed by the society on the whole
and, specifically, by its political hierarchy. This hierarchy holds at its
disposal some opportunities and rights to change and interpret old norms, to
introduce new ones or to ignore them both on some extraordinary occasions
and to some degree; the norm itself recognizes and sets forward some rules
at this point. It would be a complicated but useful task to determine and
understand nominal and real limits of these rights and opportunities, and
the panel is just aimed at contributing to this field. In this respect
ancient civilizations share some specific traits: it is precisely at this
stage of socio-cultural development that new-born hierarchies intervene in
the sphere of creation, manipulation and use of norms especially actively
and in various ways; on the other hand, this problematic is thought upon,
realized and developed very eagerly, but the society (contrary to the modern
period) does not codify or regularize the corresponding collisions; it
defines only the recommended vectors of behavior for the situations when it
deals with these collisions, but it does not create a system of concrete and
formalized mechanisms, institutions, or rules for their resolving. It means
that while exploring the essence and functioning of norms in antiquity we
must look more for precedents and cases (and their evaluation by society)
than for laws or edicts.

The Structure and Legitimation of Power in Ancient Societies of North-East
Africa, the Near and Middle East

Convenors: Prof. Eleonora E. Kormysheva (Institute for Oriental Studies,
Russian Academy of Sciences, 12 Rozhdestvenka St., Moscow, Russia; E-mail:
eleonora at orc.ru); Dr. Dan’el Kahn (Haifa University, Israel; E-mail:
danelka at netvision.net.il)

The proposed thematic scope of the panel includes the evidence from
societies belonging to a single Kulturkreis. The major factor of its
development might be defined as the strong political and ideological
influence of the great rivers’ (the Nile, the Tigris and the Euphrates)
civilizations. The regions of this area represent all the three variants of
social and political evolution in the typology established by Igor Diakonoff
(relative preponderance of the state economy and the “despotic” political
structure – Southern Mesopotamia, early South-Western Iran – Elam; total
preponderance of the state economy and the “despotic” political structure –
Egypt; the economic preponderance of rural communities, which also had a
strong influence on the royal power of mostly military character, - Sudan,
Eastern Mediterranean, the Armenian Upland, the Iranian Upland in the time
of formation and heyday of ethnically Iranian political structures, Asia
Minor). However, the doubtless historical leaders of the whole area, as to
the formation of the earliest polities (Fourth to early Third Millennia
B.C.E.), their regional entities (early to mid-Third Millennium B.C.E.), and
expansion to peripheral regions (actually, also from Fourth Millennium
B.C.E.) were the regions of the great rivers’ valleys – Egypt and Southern
Mesopotamia. Hence, their civilizations were bound to lay a guiding imprint
not only on their immediate periphery but also on more distant areas, which
happened to fall into their scope (e.g., copper-mine regions of Asia Minor,
which became a victim of the aggression of the Mesopotamian Akkadian empire
as early as in the 24th-23rd centuries B.C.E.). The scope of the panel is
supposed to comprise the whole extend of the area’s ancient history, up to
its early medieval period including the time after the Macedonian conquest,
when the area became a formative zone of the syncretic Hellenistic
civilization (ca. 3rd century B.C.E. – 3rd century C.E.). This chronological
and territorial extend permits to study within the panel a vast variety of
interrelations between societies of different types (all forms of social
evolution in the Diakonoff’s typology plus classical Greek city-states) and
their respective ideologies and cultures in the sphere of construing and
legitimating political structures.

Transitions, Transformations and Interactions of Hierarchical Structures and
Social Networks in the Late 20th – Early 21st Centuries

Convenors: Dr. Alexei G. Loutskiy (Social Affairs Department, Moscow
Government; Tel.: + 7 095 290 7454; Fax: + 7 095 957 9682; E-mail:
shaanxi at mail.ru); Oleg I. Kavykin (Department of Cultural Anthropology,
Center for Civilizational and Regional Studies, Russian Academy of Sciences,
30/1 Spiridonovka st., 123001 Moscow, Russia; Tel.: + 7 095 291 4119; Fax: +
7 095 202 07 86; E-mails: atrociter at mail.ru; oleg.kavykin at inafr.ru)

The panel's objective is to shed light on the following problems, among
others relevant to the panel's problematics: the partial transition of power
from hierarchical structures to social networks; institutionalization of
subcultures and the process of transformation from network organizations to
hierarchical structures; the pathways of hierarchies and networks
transformations; the principle of complimentarity in the network and
hierarchical structures functioning; global and local trends in the
hierarchical structures and networks development and transformations.

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