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date: 22 August 2019

Abstract and Keywords

Archaeology, especially fieldwork, has long been seen as the preserve of young, fit, and healthy people. It has experienced a rise in interest amongst the general public that has led to an increased interest in visiting historical sites and people wishing to study and work in archaeology and other areas of the heritage industry. This creates areas of potential tension between the demands of the discipline and the demands of the legislation. This article describes how archaeology as a discipline has engaged with these wider social developments and the tensions that are involved. It considers the changes that are taking place in the agencies involved in public archaeology, the commercial firms which employ archaeologists, and the educational institutions that teach archaeology in the UK. An extended case study of archaeological fieldwork training in higher education is presented as one approach to enabling disabled persons in archaeology.

Keywords: archaeology, social developments, archaeological fieldwork, heritage industry, historical sites

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