Saturday, August 26, 2023

Open Access Journal: Frontière·s

 [First posted in AWOL 12 January 2022, updated 26 August 2023]
 ISSN: 2534-7535
Frontière·s n°1
Frontière·s, Revue d’archéologie, histoire & histoire de l’art, offre un espace de réflexion épistémologique en Open Access aux chercheurs dont les travaux portent sur les sociétés antiques et médiévales. Son objectif est de proposer à la communauté scientifique un support de publication rapide et interdisciplinaire tout en garantissant la rigueur scientifique d’une revue à comité de lecture. Cette initiative est portée par de jeunes chercheurs de la Maison de l’Orient et de la Méditerranée Jean Pouilloux, principal soutien du projet.

8 | 2023
Aux frontières des espèces

The edges of species

Edited by Jérémy Clément and Mathieu Engerbeaud

The Greek and Roman mythologies are populated by hybrid creatures that borrow physical characteristics from both humans and animals, such as the well-known examples of the Sphinx, the Faun or the Minotaur. These imaginary hybridisations cross the permeable boundary that separates humans from animals. The affirmation of human exceptionality gradually allowed Greek philosophy to elevate and isolate humankind within the animal kingdom. Nevertheless, ancient and medieval literature, ethnography and zoology continued to question interspecific boundaries not as a radical dissociation but as a porous boundary, a grey zone with multiple gradients of humanity and animality, of which mythological hybridity is only one manifestation.

Crossbreeds, whether real–and known to archaeozoology–or imaginary, and found in historical and literary sources, and more generally in artistic creations, invite us to consider the points of intersection between species, which have contributed greatly to ancient art, science and mentalities. Furthermore, it is well known that the phenomena of interspecific transfer and projection play an important role in the construction of ancient ethnographic and zoological knowledge. The characterisation of exotic animals by compound zoonyms (giraffe: camelopardalis, the 'leopard-camel') is the best known example. Conversely, in order to understand animal behaviour, ancient and medieval zoology learned to study animals according to anthropocentric criteria. This led the Ancients to read these behaviours as expressions of feelings, intelligence, social organisation and even cultural practices, as in the case of elephants, to which religious practices were attributed.

The articles in this eighth issue of Frontière·s explore these various themes. To this end, the authors have carried out an in-depth analysis of the issues raised by the perception of hybrid beings, using a diachronic approach (see the interview with Antoine Pierrot and the article by Jacqueline Leclercq-Marx). Then, through case studies, the symbolic tenants of the message conveyed by hybridity are examined, both in discourse and in representation (Ioannis Mitsios and Raphaël Demès). Finally, the dossier concludes with an in-depth study of beliefs that ascribe practices similar to those of humans to animals, using the example of the elephant (Gilles Courtieu).


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See AWOL's full List of Open Access Journals in Ancient Studies

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