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Archaeological Method And Theory

Author : Linda Ellis
ISBN : 9781135582845
Genre : Reference
File Size : 23.75 MB
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This Encyclopedia brings together the most recent scientific information on a collection of subjects that are too often - and inconveniently - treated in separate publications. It provides a survey of archaeological method and theory, as well as the application of physical and biological sciences in archaeological research. Every aspect of archaeological work is represented, from the discovery process to the ultimate disposition of materials. Thus the reader will find entries on subject matter covering: * disciplinary theory * legislation affecting the work of archaeologists * pre-excavation surveying * excavation methodology * on-site conservation techniques * post-excavation analysis The rapid evolution of analytical technology is often superficially treated or not covered at all in textbooks or other commonly available sources. Here, the latest refinements in techniques such as radiometric dating, stable isotopic analysis, and the PCR technique of DNA analysis are presented clearly and authoritatively. The discussion of these techniques is amplified by including results of the work of professionals conducting interdisciplinary research and by covering the methodologi enhancements provided by the physical and natural sciences. Cultural property legislation, regardless of its country of origin, has affected how archaeologists conduct their work. This encyclopedia covers all major U.S. legislation developed for the protection of cultural property, including the recent Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act, and offers a substantial article on worldwide legislation concerning the reburial of human remains and its effects on the present and future practice of archaeology. Without some sort of conservation program at the point of excavation, valuable materials may be inadvertently contaminated or destroyed. Many simple and low-cost techniques to promote both sample integrity and long-term preservation for major classes of materials are described in this volume. Traditional treatments of method and theory usually focus on prehistoric periods and are limited in their geographic range. This volume includes discussions based on various historical periods on different continents, as reflected in entries such as Historical Archaeology, Industrial Archaeology, Medieval Archaeology, and Classical Archaeology.
Category: Reference

Essential Tensions In Archaeological Method And Theory

Author : Todd L. VanPool
ISBN : UOM:39015060039487
Genre : Social Science
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One size does not fit all in archaeology Foundations of Archaeological Inquiry James M. Skibo, series editor ARCHAEOLOGICAL THEORY, SOME SAY, seems to have fragmented into a thousand fundamentalisms. By working on a broader set of empirical issues than ever before, archaeologists are indeed applying and refining a variety of perspectives. Yet the editors of this volume make a case that it is appropriate for archaeologists to use a logical variety of theoretical structures to answer different kinds of questions, combining approaches as necessary. In that spirit of plurality, contributors to this volume identify an important theoretical or methodological problem and present an argument regarding its solution. They also provide a critical evaluation of the current state of archaeological method and theory, illustrating that such recurrent issues as the role of agency and the importance of social considerations in the formation of archaeological research dominate current theoretical development. By presenting both the range of important questions and a variety of answers, this volume contributes to the "essential tension" that will further the growth of archaeological theory.
Category: Social Science

Kalinga Ethnoarchaeology

Author : William A. Longacre
ISBN : UVA:X002453292
Genre : Dangtalan (Philippines)
File Size : 31.57 MB
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Based on twenty years of research in the highlands of the northern Philippines and constituting one of the best-known projects in the field, Kalinga Ethnoarchaeology examines the contemporary pottery and basketry of several small Kalinga villages, revealing how a traditional tribal group makes, distributes, uses, breaks, and discards their ceramics and how pottery and other material culture relate to human behavior. The book's contributors approach a single body of ceramic data from many different angles, encompassing both traditional concerns and developing trends in village ethnoarchaeology. Addressing fundamental questions of archaeological method and theory, the essays discuss why there is or is not a correlation between material and social boundaries, how pottery use can be inferred from use-alterations, why more pots break in larger households, what relationships exist between household wealth and material possessions, how a pottery distribution system works, and how and why technological change occurs. Providing tangible links between material culture and human behavior and organization, Kalinga Ethnoarchaeology will prove invaluable to prehistorians reconstructing past behavior from material remains.
Category: Dangtalan (Philippines)

Archaeological Anthropology

Author : James M. Skibo
ISBN : 081652517X
Genre : Social Science
File Size : 22.10 MB
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For centuries, the goal of archaeologists was to document and describe material artifacts, and at best to make inferences about the origins and evolution of human culture and about prehistoric and historic societies. During the 1960s, however, a number of young, primarily American archaeologists, including William Longacre, rebelled against this simplistic approach. Wanting to do more than just describe, Longacre and others believed that genuine explanations could be achieved by changing the direction, scope, and methodology of the field. What resulted was the New Archaeology, which blended scientific method and anthropology. It urged those working in the field to formulate hypotheses, derive conclusions deductively and, most important, to test them. While, over time the New Archaeology has had its critics, one point remains irrefutable: archaeology will never return to what has since been called its Òstate of innocence.Ó In this collection of twelve new chapters, four generations of Longacre protŽgŽs show how they are building upon and developing but also modifying the theoretical paradigm that remains at the core of Americanist archaeology. The contributions focus on six themes prominent in LongacreÕs career: the intellectual history of the field in the late twentieth century, archaeological methodology, analogical inference, ethnoarchaeology, cultural evolution, and reconstructing ancient society. More than a comprehensive overview of the ideas developed by one of the most influential scholars in the field, however, Archaeological Anthropology makes stimulating contributions to contemporary research. The contributors do not unequivocally endorse LongacreÕs ideas; they challenge them and expand beyond them, making this volume a fitting tribute to a man whose robust research and teaching career continues to resonate.
Category: Social Science

Archaeological Survey

Author : E.B. Banning
ISBN : 9781461507697
Genre : Social Science
File Size : 37.34 MB
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This practical volume, the first book in the Manuals in Archaeological Method, Theory and Technique series, examines in detail the factors that affect archaeological detectability in surveys whose methods range from visual to remote sensing in land, underwater, and intertidal zones - furnishing a comprehensive treatment of prospection, parameter estimation, model building, and detection of spatial structure.
Category: Social Science

Archaeological Method

Author : Evzen Neustupny
ISBN : 0521380766
Genre : Social Science
File Size : 32.57 MB
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The archaeological record consists of 'dead' finds, remnants of human culture. The archaeologist relies on them to understand how past societies were organized and how they functioned. This book, by the distinguished Czech scholar Evzen Neustupny, considers the archaeological method, the way in which archaeologists translate mute objects into descriptions of a living past. The method involves a series of steps: an analysis of the archaeological record; a synthesis of the finds to generate formal archaeological structure; and the use of models derived from descriptions of observed human activity to explain these structures. Without models, archaeologists would have no way of interpreting their finds. The author also considers the relevance for archaeology of such concepts as induction and deduction, empirical research and theory.
Category: Social Science