These figurines are “predominantly female, and are relatively abundant in the Greek (and Balkan) Neolithic, with clear Near Eastern parallels. However, little can be said about their meaning in any of these contexts. The natural tendency has been to read the female class (Figure 3.10) either as a goddess or a series of goddesses, or as ancestors (in a female-oriented kinship system or matriliny), or, given the ample proportions of most, as symbolic representations of (female or general) fertility, which can then be extended to animals whose fertility is also welcome” . . . Most recently several commentators suggest that the meaning of figurines depended more on their context, such as their deployment in different phases of human life or in the circulation of the objects themselves. It is very unhelpful that their occurrence in Greek Neolithic burials is little known about, due to the poverty of such contexts; since the successor figurines from the FN-EBA in Southern Greece occur frequently in formal cemeteries, and are then considered as likely to have religious associations” (Bintliff 2012, pp. 74-75).
iii To the Bintliff’s general scheme in endnote ix above should be added the more particular chronologies for Early Cycladic culture from Doumas 2000, p. 20 with period, phase, and presence on the islands indicated as below with small changes. The highpoint is the Early Cycladic II period from 2800-2300. “The florescence of the Cycladic Bronze Age art . . . is in the ECI-II period of the third millennium BCE (Grotta-Pelos and Keros-Syros phases” (Bintliff 2012, p. 114).
[4800: LN as above] / presence on: Antiparos, Thera, Mykonos, Naxos
4500: FN / Kea
3200-2800: Early Cycladic EC I / Successive Phases:
Lakkoudes Phase on Naxos;
[Grotta-] Pelos Phase on Antiparos, Despotikon, Thera, Melos, Naxos,
Paros, Siphnos; and
Plastiras Phase on Antiparos, Despotikon, Thera, Kea, and Paros
2800-2300: EC II /
Kampos Phase on Amorgos, Antiparos, Despotikon, Thera, Koufonisia,
Naxos, and Paros;
[Keros-] Syros Phase on Amorgos, Despotikon, Delos, Thera, Kea, Keros,
Naxos, Paros, Siphnos, Syros, Christiana
2300-2000: EC III /
Phylakapi I on Thera, Kea, Melos, Naxos, and Paros
2000: Middle Cycladic MC / Thera, Kea, Melos, Naxos, and Paros
iv “The very beginning of generalized settlement on the Cyclades, with the late Neolithic Saliagos culture, is already associated with marble figurines . . . but they belong to the Neolithic Greek and Near Eastern style. In the following Final Neolithic, at Kephala on Kea, both ceramic figurines and marble vessels show the development of characteristic Early Cycladic styles, and the formal cemetery here also introduces the Cycladic form of burials. However the florescence of Cycladic Bronze Age art . . . is in the EC1-2 periods of the third millennium BCE (Grotta-Pelos and Keros-Syros phases).
The commonest figurine appears on analysis to be female; with folded arms, and naked, with a highly schematic appearance. It appears throughout the islands and on their margins, such as parts of the Eastern Greek Mainland and in Early Minoan Crete. . . . from the minute study of the corpus of figurines . . . nearly all seem to have been painted. . . . It can be suggested that the canonical ‘undifferentiated human,’ till recently forming the accepted reading of the figurines now appears to be a distinctive individual, very much affecting the possible meaning of such objects” (Bintliff 2012, p. 114).
v There is a realization “from the minute study of the corpus of figurines [by “ultraviolet reflectography and computer enhancement”: Broodbank 2008, p. 49], that nearly all have been painted. Although the aim was to highlight detail, the effect dramatically alters their appearance with hair and eye color and painted designs on the face (resembling warpaint or tattoos rather than makeup, to my eyes). It can be suggested that the canonical ‘undifferentiated human,’ till recently forming the accepted reading of the figurines now appears to be a distinctive individual, very much affecting the possible meaning of such objects” (Bintliff 2012, p. 114).
vi Major collections are to be found in the Goulandris Collection of the Museum of Cycladic Art in Athens (see Renfrew 1991 and Doumas 2010), in the Getty Museum collection in Los Angeles (cf. Getz-Gentle 1995), and in the Ashmolean Museum in Oxford (cf. Sherratt 2000) based on the early collections of Sir Arthur Evans. Cf. collections also in the Louvre in Paris and the Metropolitan Museum in New York.
viiSpecifically, this type of figurine is called the Early Cycladic II “white marble figurine, Late Spedos variety.” See Tsonou-Herbst 2010, Figure 16.1 (2), p. 212. This type of figurine corresponds roughly (excepting its lyre-like head shape) to Renfrew’s 1972 IV.A figurine from the Keros-Syros period reproduced in Bintliff 2012, p. 115, Figure 4.12.
viii “When talking of ‘style,’ Renfrew and Bahn 2012 remark, “we must separate the style of a culture and period from the (usually) much more closely defined style of an individual worker within that period. We need to show, therefore, how the works that are recognizable in that larger group (e.g. the Attic black-figure style [in the classic categorizing work of J. Beazley in the mid-twentieth century]) divide on closer examination into smaller well-defined groups. Moreover, we need to bear in mind that these smaller subgroupings might relate not to individual artists but to different time periods in the development of the style, or to different subregions (i. e. the local substyles). Or they might relate to workshops rather than to single artists” (p. 412). The attempt to assign individual figurines to individual “masters” was pioneered by Getz-Preziosi 1987. Related closely to the figurines attributed to the Goulandris Master are those of the late Spedos variety attributed to the so-called “Naxos Museum Master.” Other masters are “The Copenhagen Master,” named because of a group of stylistically individualized figurines at the Copenhagen Museum, “The Steiner Master,” “The Schuster Master,” and “The Ashmolean Museum Master” at Oxford (see Doumas 2000, pp. 46-48).
ix Doumas 2000, cat. no. 178, provenance unknown, showing front and side views of the figurine and providing references to Renfrew 1991. Cf. the later similar but characteristically larger figure (not figurine) in cat. no. 222, possibly from Keros, and also of the Spedos variety, with references to Renfrew 1986a and 1986b.
Philosophers today generally prefer to use the expression “physicalism” rather than the expression “materialism.” Already among such Pre-Socratic philosophers as Democritus and the Greek atomists the idea that everything is composed ultimately of matter was current. In the twentieth century the Vienna positivists linked the notion of materialism more precisely with modern scientific understandings of matter. Materialism became the view that every existing thing simply is matter. Shortly after the middle of the twentieth century, however, philosophers began to take over even more precise scientific understandings of matter as ultimately forces and energy. To capture this understanding more clearly, they went on to use instead of the expression “materialism” the expression “physicalism.” In what then I use the expression “physicalism” generally as the simple view that everything in the space-time world is physical, and particularly to denote the compound view that (a) all mental particulars are physical particulars and that (b) all properties of these mental particulars are physical properties. Note however that, pace talk of forces and energy, what counts as physical remains vague. Consequently, much continuing discussion in the philosophy of mind concerns to how conceptually to manage such vagueness.