Social Complexity

Ben-Yosef, E., 2021. Rethinking the Social Complexity of Early Iron Age Nomads. Jerusalem Journal of Archaeology , 1 , pp. 155-179.Abstract

Recent evidence from the Aravah Valley challenges the prevailing assumption

that Bedouin ethnography and inferences from ancient Near Eastern archives

can adequately compensate for the archaeological lacuna in the study of

biblical-era nomads. The evidence indicates that nomadic social organization

at the turn of the 1st millennium BCE could have been – and in at least one

case was – far more complex than ever considered before. This paper discusses

the implications of the now extended spectrum of possible interpretations

of nomads to the archaeological discourse on early Iron Age state formation

processes in the Southern Levant.