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Kirstine Haase

Building urbanity: Spatial organisation as social practice in medieval Odense

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The article investigates the social practices of the inhabit-ants of the medieval town as it is expressed in the mate-riality of the urban landscape. It is argued that a practice-based approach allows an understanding of how urbanity, defi ned as a specifi c set of social practices motivated by the shared space, developed in the medieval period. The town is seen as something more than a physical entity. The argument is developed through a diachronic and con-textual analysis of the spatial organisation and layout of the medieval town of Odense in Denmark, as it is seen in the archaeological record of I. Vilhelm Werners Plads, representing the 9th-16th centuries. The analysis demon-strates that from the mid-12th century, the organisation of the settlement plot and the interaction between town dwellers and townscape change. This change of practices is seen as related to a diff erent mind-set and perception of what it means to live in a town, that progressively has provided a sense of urbanity.
Original languageEnglish
JournalActa Archaeologica
Pages (from-to)43-76
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2019
Externally publishedYes

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