- The Oxford Handbook of Archaeology
- List of Contributors
- The Discipline of Archaeology
- The Formative Century, 1860–1960
- The Theoretical Scene, 1960–2000
- Into the Future
- Measuring the Passage of Time: Achievements and Challenges in Archaeological Dating
- Human Activity in a Spatial Context
- Data Collection by Excavation
- Mastering Materials
- The Nature of Humanness
- Early Hominids
- The Emergence of <i>Homo</i> Sapiens Sapiens
- The Neanderthals
- Peopling the World
- Hunters and Gatherers
- Early Farming and Domestication
- Studying Human Diet
- Cultural Complexity
- Trade and Interaction
- China: State Formation and Urbanization
- The Central Andean Region in Prehistory
- The Mediterranean and its Hinterland
- The Archaeology of Sub-Saharan Africa
- Pre-Islamic Central Asia
- The Circumpolar Zone
- East Asia
- The Pacific Islands
- North America
- South American Archaeology
- Indigenous Voices, Archaeology, and the Issue of Repatriation
- Sex and Gender
- Archaeological Representation: the Consumption and Creation of the Past
- Community Archaeology
- Subject Index
- Index of Personal Names: Includes all referenced authors.
Abstract and Keywords
This article examines the nature and history of archaeology. It describes what archaeologists do and where they work and discusses how archaeological finds are recovered and classified, and how archaeological documentations are stored and retrieved. It explains the relationship of archaeology with history, anthropology, and the humanities and suggests that the development of archaeology has been strongly linked to intellectual, ideological, and economic changes in the western world during the last 200 years. It predicts that archaeological practice will become increasingly context-dependent and situational which will in turn increase or expand the variability of archaeological theory and interpretation, not to mention its repertoire of methods.
Kristian Kristiansen is Professor of Archaeology, Department of Archaeology and Ancient History, University of Gothenburg, Sweden.
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