Bathing Culture and the Development of Urban Space (C-6-8)

Research project

In four field seasons, carried out jointly with the University of Oxford, this research project investigated the development of two bathing complexes at Pompeii and their role in its urban development. The fieldwork results are contextualized within an overarching focus on the multifaceted phenomenon of cityscaping. This project contributes, beyond Pompeii and bathing culture, to current debates on the urbanization of Italy and the sociocultural, economic and political conditions, influences, and agents of this process.

Urban Planing and Development in Jordan (C-6-2)

Research project

This concerted project investigates the two urban centers Petra and Gadara and their surrounding countryside using comparative formulations and methods in seeking to determine the causes of similar and dissimilar developments and phenomena. In order to gain an understanding of the importance of the interaction between environmental and social factors in the formation and historical development of the urban form, interaction between several disciplines is required (e.g. geography, topography, geology, meteorology, technical sciences, ecology, demography, sociology, building law, building economy and cultural studies).

Urbs Satirica (C-6-6)

Research project

The research objective to investigate processes by which urban spaces were actively appropriated in ancient cultures is  in this project pursued through the study of Ancient Rome. The scope lies on examining the characteristic cityscaping of the lower strata. As the source material is often elitist in nature, great caution must be exercised in preparing a view “from below”. Access to these marginalized strata can nevertheless be obtained through a dedicated study of Roman satire.

Christian Urban Discourse (C-6-3)

Research project

This project analysing urban semantics in patristic texts dealt with the cultural horizons of early Christians, a religious, cultural and social fringe group in the Roman Empire. The special focus was on the considerable distance towards different aspects of ancient urban life of which Christians were accused by the Romans. This subject was approached from various angles, following the assumption that the complex phenomenon of Christian urban semantics and their space-shaping consequences could be studied only through investigating a combination of several factors.