Pottery as an indication of mobilities?

Heitz, Caroline; Stapfer, Regine Barbara (5 June 2015). Pottery as an indication of mobilities? (Unpublished). In: Mobilities and Pottery Production Archaeological and Anthropological Perspectives. Bern. 05.06.-06.06.2015.

Pottery is one of the most common and stylistically differentiated sources in prehistoric archaeology.
This might be the reason why it served as a waste projection surface for archaeological notions about culture, identity, and mobility in the past. As we do not have access to emic categorisations of Neolithic societies we focus on contexts of practice in which pottery was incorporated. It is the moment of production, which left some of the clearest traces on the vessels. Different ways of using raw materials, specific techniques, and characteristic pottery styles can be observed. We understand them as a result of habitus, as socially shared internalized schemes, patterns and habits in pottery production. Taking this as a staring point, two main pottery groups can be differed on the Swiss Plateau between 3900 and 3500 BC: the Mediterranean influenced Cortaillod pottery in Western Switzerland and the Danubian influenced Pfyn pottery in North-Eastern Switzerland. These pottery styles were not only entangled to some degree. Furthermore, in some settlements vessels made in “foreign” styles - Michelsberg, Munzingen, Néolithique Moyen Bourguignon - are present too. Some of them were travelling objects, as their nonlocal raw materials show. Others were locally made, indicating long-term mobility of their producers. To analyse these phenomena of mobilites and entanglements in our PhDs we plan to apply different archaeological and archaeometrical methods, thus striving for a deeper understanding of the transformative potential of moving people, objects and ideas in Neolithic societies on the Swiss Plateau.

Item Type:

Conference or Workshop Item (Speech)


06 Faculty of Humanities > Department of History and Archaeology > Institute of Archaeological Sciences > Pre- and Early History
06 Faculty of Humanities > Department of History and Archaeology > Institute of Archaeological Sciences

UniBE Contributor:

Heitz, Caroline Franziska, Stapfer, Regine Barbara


900 History > 930 History of ancient world (to ca. 499)




Caroline Franziska Heitz

Date Deposited:

30 Oct 2015 15:40

Last Modified:

05 Dec 2022 14:49



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