The three main program lines of OIKOS can be found below. OIKOS research is organized in research groups and research platforms.
Editing and explaining texts and other sources
The first line of research involves the disclosing of sources by means of critical editions and the publication of sources, commentaries and other aids, and through linguistic and literary analysis of texts and iconographical research. The interpretation of these sources, both textual and otherwise, involves aspects like the study of the function of texts in society.
Studying processes of the formation and transmission of culture
The second line of research addresses the relationship between cultural products and the historical and socio-cultural environment in which they originate. This relationship involves processes of cultural formation and transmission.
- The formation of culture is a broad socio-cultural phenomenon that takes place on numerous plains and comprises a wide variety of activities. Participants in cultural formation may be individuals, but group processes and the influence of the social and political structures of the Graeco-Roman and Near Eastern world can also play a part.
- The transmission of culture is a necessarily collective enterprise, in which individuals play an important part by giving a new form or content to the cultural goods that are being transmitted. The tension between collective transmission and individual creative input is an important object of research.
Theory and historiography of the discipline
The third line of research focuses on the critical analysis of ancient and modern visualisations of Graeco-Roman and Near Eastern Antiquity.
- Artefacts and other non-literary sources offer a valuable corrective for the outlook on the ancient world afforded by the texts of historiographers and other ancient authors.
- 'Perception research' teaches us how ancient observers perceived the processes of cultural formation and transmission, and how they captured these processes in words, concepts and images.
- Finally, investigation of the history of reception enhances our awareness of the changes that our conception of classical antiquity has undergone over time. Research along this program line is therefore directed to the historiography and the theoretical basis of the discipline.
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