By Gavin Lucas
This paintings takes as its place to begin the position of fieldwork and the way this has replaced during the last one hundred fifty years. the writer argues opposed to innovative debts of fieldwork and in its place locations it in its broader highbrow context to significantly study the connection among theoretical paradigms and daily archaeological practice.
In offering a much-needed old and significant review of present perform in archaeology, this publication opens up a subject matter of discussion which impacts all archaeologists, no matter what their specific pursuits.
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Extra info for Critical approaches to fieldwork : contemporary and historical archaeological practice
Petrie makes an interesting comment towards the end of the aforementioned chapter with regard to displaying objects in museums; he states that they should be displayed so as to demonstrate both their development and context (Petrie 1904: 132). This idea of the twofold character of an object is derived from the Scandinavian innovations in museum display by Thomsen and later Hildebrand, and it is worth exploring a little further as it helps to understand Petrie’s focus on seriation and typology in providing the ‘original sequence of construction’ of a site.
He clearly saw the publication of Segontium as a key moment, drawing attention to a section of a cellar where, as he puts it, ‘the whole bones of the matter are’ (Wheeler 1956: 60; see Figure 2). Soon after, in 1927 in an address to the Royal Society of Arts, he pronounced stratiﬁcation as the key principle of excavation, and through a number of examples, particularly of Roman sites, he Figure 2 Wheeler’s section at the Roman fort of Segontium 38 1111 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 1011 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 20111 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 30111 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 40111 1 2 3 44111 Critical approaches to fieldwork demonstrated how the basic geological concept can be applied on archaeological sites; natural stratiﬁcation such as the lake bed clays of Sweden illustrated ‘the principle of deﬁnite chronological sequence represented by the superposition of stratum over stratum in the soil.
In this he is clearly following on the innovation of Pitt Rivers who undoubtedly changed the graphic representation of archaeology through the use of plans – a point acknowledged by O. G. S. Crawford as being the ‘one essential feature in every excavation’ (Crawford 1921: 208). g. Clark on Starr Carr). Moreover, Petrie’s great criticism of earlier excavation reports was their lack of plans – he singles Finding the past 1111 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 1011 1 2 3111 4 5 6 7 8 9 20111 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 30111 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 40111 1 2 3 44111 27 out as an example Greenwell’s British Barrows (1877) which contained very few illustrations, yet most of the text of which could have easily been reduced to a series of plans (Petrie 1904: 114).
Critical approaches to fieldwork : contemporary and historical archaeological practice by Gavin Lucas