International colloquium «Insulae in Context»
University of Basel / Augusta Raurica (CH)
September 25th - 28th 2019
The archaeological settlement category of roman Insulae stays in the focus of this international colloquium organized by the Vindonissa-professorship of the University Basel and Augusta Raurica.
This group of urban living and trading quarters is characterized by the surrounding square of the commonly orthogonal street grid. The basic idea of the colloquium is to build a platform for researchers who are or have been working on Insulae to discuss specific questions.
Although the main focus lies on the structural unit of the insula, the perspective shall be extended to the urban surroundings. The embedding in the respective context of the insula enables further statements.
Based on the architectural layout of an Insula and their spatial and functional structure raises the fundamental question about the functionality of an Insula.
- Functionality of an Insula?
- Which characteristic elements make an Insula to what it is?
- How is the Insula used by its inhabitants and users?
Are there any recurrent basic forms in the Insula-architecture independent from a geographical and chronological situation? Are there any regional forms?
- Is it allowed to transfer recognitions from the Vesuvian cities and other Italian sites to the situation in the Northwestern provinces and other regions? Is it permitted to transfer the observations regarding the functional use of specific rooms?
- Multifunctional use of rooms. Relation between living and working?
- Beginning and ending of an Insula. Are there any parallels between different sites regarding the development of an Insula structure and how is the conveyance arranged?
- Tenure status in the course of settlement development? How constant or alternating is it? Dependence between the different rooms and maybe also between the different owned units?
Answering those and other questions may possibly lead to a further location-independent categorization of Insulae. If we increase the focus from the single Insula and their surroundings to the whole city we can also compare an urban district in a larger scale.
The colloquium Insulae in context is public and addressed to all interested participants.