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in: Jennifer Davis & Michael McCormick (Eds), The Long Morning of Medieval Europe. New Directions in Early Medieval Studies (Aldershot: Ashgate 2008) pp. 33-53.

From the book’s introduction: “Joachim Henning turns the old historical questions about why empires fail into new ones by using archaeology and texts to compare the nature of the production and distribution of wealth in the late Roman and early medieval countrysides. Slave labor, the much-touted great estate, technology, and economic performance fuel this essay in archaeological synthesis.