Conference 2017

Update: Those who missed the colloquium – or require a reminder! – can read Kristina Junker‘s compte-rendu here on the ArchéOrient blog.

The Second HCARN Colloquium, ‘Ritual Matters: Archaeology and Religion in Hellenistic Central Asia’, will take place at the Deutsches Archäologisches Institut, Berlin, on November 2-4 2017.

HCARN 2017 preliminary programme.

Call for Papers: PDF format.  (Now obsolete.)

Call for Papers

Ritual Matters: Archaeology and Religion in Hellenistic Central Asia

November 2-4 2017, Eurasia Department, German Archaeological Institute, Berlin

Evolving ritual practices, divine iconography, and the construction and renovation of cult spaces all speak to wider processes of cultural and political change in Pre-Islamic Central Asia. The archaeological record has much to contribute to our understanding of religious practices in the region over the longue durée, but much remains to be done in terms of developing critical approaches to this material and exploiting scholarly expertise across disciplinary boundaries.

This conference will bring together specialists in the field of Central Asian archaeology to present new fieldwork and explore areas of common interest. The conference also serves as the second meeting of the Hellenistic Central Asia Research Network, following a productive workshop at the University of Reading in April 2016. We understand both ‘religion’ and ‘Hellenistic’ broadly, extending to all areas of ritual practice, in the wider period of the late first millennium BCE and early first millennium CE, across Central Asia from Sogdiana to Gandhāra and beyond.

Topics of interest include but are not limited to:

  • Integrating analysis of archaeological and textual sources.
  • Zoroastrianism in Central Asia: problems of interpreting archaeological evidence.
  • New fieldwork at sanctuary and temple sites.
  • Religious change and innovation.
  • Cultural interaction and religious interaction.
  • Theoretical and methodological approaches to archaeological evidence.

We welcome proposals for 20-minute papers on relevant topics, from both established scholars and early career researchers. Abstracts of no more than 200 words, along with the author’s name, title and institutional affiliation, should be submitted to Gunvor Lindström ( and Rachel Mairs ( no later than 31 May 2017.

Thanks to the generosity of the Eurasia Department of the Deutsches Archäologisches Institut, we anticipate being able to offer some travel funding to participants, on a case by case basis.

Gunvor Lindström (Deutsches Archäologisches Institut))

Rachel Mairs (University of Reading)