Michael Economou

I intend to produce a study of the human history of the Judean Mountains during the Hellenistic and early Roman periods. Using a broad range of textual and material evidence, I will describe the relationship between the inhabitants of the area and their environment over several centuries, with a focus on strategies of resource management—including evidence for the repurposing of previously unproductive land—and the area’s developing role in both regional and inter-regional systems of economic and cultural exchange. Methodologically, I am inspired by the recent revival of area studies in history and anthropology, and the work of modern landscape archaeologists. I hope that approaching the region through these analytical lenses will allow me to productively engage with major issues in scholarship. In particular, I hope to contribute to discussions about the role of pilgrimage (and the Temple more generally) in the local economy and society.