Associated postdoctoral fellow Martin Hinz, M.A.

Associated postdoctoral fellow

Martin Hinz (Germany, 1977)

M.A. in Pre- & Protohistory, European Ethnology & Informatics

PhD project
Neolithische Siedlungsstrukturen im südöstlichen Schleswig-Holstein: Dynamik in Landschaft und Besiedlung.
In this PhD thesis changes in settlement patterns in Schleswig-Holstein during the Neolithic were investigated. This was carried out on the basis of a restricted working area, including the districts of Stormarn and Lauenburg. The investigation of the archaeological remains was accompanied by an analysis of a pollen diagram from Lake Belau. According to this diagram three phases of Neolithic settlement activity could be defined. In the beginning (from 4100 cal BC onward) a strong charcoal influx but no major indicators of clearances could be observed. After 3700 cal BC the picture changes, larger and permanent openings of the area could be deduced. This trend continues until 3100 cal BC, when a marked decrease in settlement activity is visible, followed by a change in the land use regime after 2900 cal BC, visible as cyclic changes in the pollen diagram that could be associated with shifting agriculture or an increase in the use of animal resources.

From this follows that the archaeologically defined phases do not coincide with the economic phases visible in the pollen record. To check whether this is also visible in changes in the distribution of settlements or activity, the surface finds of the two mentioned districts were classified according to function and temporal position with a probability-based algorithm on the basis of their archaeological remains. The development of the spatial patterns of the sites and their relation to the natural surroundings were investigated in time slices according to their estimated dates. As one of the main results it could be observed that the distribution of the archaeological material mirrors the developments visible in the pollen record, indicating that major changes in the economic patterns predate changes in the cultural expressions, making it very likely that developments in economy are the cause of developments in cultural change. During Middle Neolithic times an increase in the use of higher and dryer territories became obvious. This was not accompanied by a change of the locations of the settlements themselves. The sites in the higher areas rather represent remains of temporal activities, making mobile herding one of the most plausible explanations for the observed pattern. But this shift took place during the time of the Funnel Beaker Style, and it was only continued and extended during the following period of Single Grave Custom and Style.

Several other aspects were investigated, for example the location of megalithic graves, their relation to each other and to the settlement sites, taking the natural surroundings into account. These sites do occur in clusters whose layout could be best explained on the basis of spatial simulation in a process in which individual settlements constructed several graves contemporaneously on deliberately chosen places in the landscape but not especially in the center or at the periphery of their territories. These places are usually higher than the settlement sites themselves, but far from being intentionally positioned on hill tops or other prominent places. This contrasts interpretations in which megalithic graves are thought to function as landscape markers.

The results were controlled for the effect of different source biases and in doing so their validity could be confirmed.

Research interests Computer applications in archaeology, theoretical issues of pre-and protohistorical archaeology, hanseatic history, early bronze age, collective burials, neolithisation of northern Europe, ethnology, sociology, dynamics in societies.
Post PhD Position Koordinator Schwerpunktprogramm 1400, Institut für Ur- und Frühgeschichte, Christian-Albrechts-Universität zu Kiel

Since April 2008
Member of the Graduate School “Human Development in Landscapes” at the Christian-Albrechts-University Kiel. Graduated in spring 2008 with a master thesis on multivariate analysis of the Early Bronze Age Únětice Culture. Studies of pre- and protohistory, European ethnology and informatics at the Universities of Kiel and Berlin. Member of the spokesperson council of the Arbeitsgemeinschaft Theorie (T-AG).

Work experience
  • Civilian service at the Stadtgeschichtliches Museum (municipal museum) Schabbellhaus Wismar
  • Working on different occasions as student research assistant
  • Working on different occasions as system administrator
  • Member of the organisation team of the exibitions „Typisch Bauer !?- Selbst- und Fremdbilder von der Landwirtschaft“ and „Slawen in Plön. Kriege, Kult und Chroniken“
  • Editorial work on various publications
Selected publications

Eine multivariate Analyse Aunjetitzer Fundgesellschaften. (Master thesis)

in press
Hinz, M.: Collective and individual burial practices: Wartberg - Bernburg - Tiefstich.

Fritsch, B., Furholt, M., Hinz, M., Lorenz, L., Nelson H., Schafferer, G., Schiesberg, S., Sjögren, K.-G., Dichtezentren und lokale Gruppierungen - Eine Karte zu den Großsteingräbern Mittel- und Nordeuropas. Auf:

Hinz, M.: Eine multivariate Analyse Aunjetitzer Fundgesellschaften. Universitätsforschungen zur Prähistorischen Archäologie 173 (Bonn 2009).

Territoriale und soziale Strukturen: Modelle zur Kollektivgrabsitte der Wartberg-Gruppe. In: Varia neolithica VI. Neolithische Monumente und neolithische Gesellschaften. Beiträge der Sitzung der Arbeitsgemeinschaft Neolithikum während der Jahrestagung des Nordwestdeutschen Verbandes für Altertumsforschung e.V. in Schleswig, 9. – 10. Oktober 2007 (Langenweissbach 2009) 91–104.

Territoriale und soziale Strukturen. Modelle zur Kollektivgrabsitte der Wartberg-Gruppe. In:

Various articles in: M. Gläser (ed.), Slawen in Plön ; Kriege, Kult und Chroniken (Kiel 2006).

Various articles in: M. Gläser (ed.), Mönche, Märkte und Matrosen: ein stadtgeschichtlicher Rundgang für Kiel (Laboe 2004)

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