Archaeology: The Key Concepts (Routledge Key Guides)
Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub
From two of the best-known archaeological writers in the trade, this outstanding resource provides a thorough survey of the key ideas in archaeology, and how they impact on archaeological thinking and method.
Clearly written, and easy to follow, Archaeology: The Key Concepts collates entries written specifically by field specialists, and each entry offers a definition of the term, its origins and development, and all the major figures involved in the area.
The entries include:
- thinking about landscape
- archaeology of cult and religion
- cultural evolution
- concepts of time
- urban societies
- the antiquity of humankind
- archaeology of gender
- feminist archaeology
- experimental archaeology
- multiregional evolution.
With guides to further reading, extensive cross-referencing, and accessibly written for even beginner students, this book is a superb guide for anyone studying, teaching, or with any interest in this fascinating subject.
ancestor living as much as 600,000 years ago. That is a highly significant result, which takes one beyond the inferences which can be made from the anthropological study of the fossil bones themselves. Turning back now to the earlier development of archaeogenetics, the study of blood groups showed as early as 1994 that there was a high frequency of the Rhesus Negative blood group in the Basque country of Spain. Since the Basque language has no known relatives, and is certainly unrelated to the
not inferring it! In the past three decades, processual archaeologists have worked diligently to pursue their goal of finding and understanding regularities in cultural change through time and to find solutions to the challenges and problems that their initial efforts raised. For example, their solution to the problem of making rigorous interpretations of the archaeological record was to build what was termed ‘middle-range theory’. Such efforts might better be termed ‘bridging’ or ‘linking’
evolution is characterised by changing frequencies of genes in populations through time as a result of such processes as natural selection, so cultural evolution refers to the changing distributions of cultural attributes in populations, likewise affected by processes such as natural selection but also by others that have no analogue in genetic evolution. In fact, to understand changing patterns of human behaviour and organisation we need to take account of both the biological and cultural
residues of other tissues) as they pass through human cultural systems and enter the archaeological record. ‘Taphonomy’ means literally the ‘laws of burial’ (from the Greek taphos, ‘burial’, and nomos, ‘law’), and refers specifically to the field of study that is concerned with the physical and chemical processes (induced by human, animal or natural agents) that modify an organism after its death and through which its remains are incorporated into geological deposits. The study of discard and
archaeologist, and she can think of no one better to carry out archaeology in Anishinabe lands, as only a native person can accord the right levels of respect to local cultural materials but only a trained archaeologist has the full range of skills to find, excavate and interpret archaeological materials. An important part of archaeology’s origin myth is that the nineteenth-century origins of professional archaeology came about through battles between science and religion in which a scientific