Archaeological Theory: An Introduction / Edition 2

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Archaeological Theory, 2nd Edition is the most current and comprehensive introduction to the field available. Thoroughly revised and updated, this engaging text offers students an ideal entry point to the major concepts and ongoing debates in archaeological, research.

Exploring the many ways of approaching the human past, from positivism to postmodernism, Johnson reveals the historical origins of different schools of thought and sets theories against the practical problems, they are intended to solve, as well as against wider developments in other disciplines.

A lucid and concise guide to the most updated thinking and terminology in the field, Archaeological Theory, 2nd Edition remains an invaluable resource for students and archaeologists of all stripes.

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What People Are Saying

From the Publisher
“This is not just a thought-provoking up-to-date account of archaeological theory; it is also a helpful and engaging introduction for all those interested in the full array of archaeological perspectives in use today.”
Ian Hodder, Stanford University

"With disarming wit and inspiring clarity, Matthew Johnson's Archaeological Theory provides an engaging history of archaeological thinking that illuminates the discipline's past and charts new pathways for its future."
Adam Smith, University of Chicago

"This is the key text for understanding archaeological theory. Matthew Johnson explains concepts and terms clearly and succinctly and makes complex theoretical ideas easily accessible."
Claire Smith, Flinders University

"In its coverage even better than the first edition, and as refreshingly written. An excellent guide through the changing landscape of archaeological theory. A 'must read'!"
Graeme Barker, University of Cambridge

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781405100151
  • Publisher: Wiley
  • Publication date: 1/26/2010
  • Series: Wiley Desktop Editions Series
  • Edition number: 2
  • Pages: 328
  • Sales rank: 259,077
  • Product dimensions: 5.90 (w) x 8.90 (h) x 0.70 (d)

Meet the Author

Matthew Johnson is Professor of Archaeology at the University of Southampton. He has taught at the University of Sheffield, St. David's University College, Lampeter, and at Durham University. His previous books include Housing Culture: Traditional Architecture in an English Landscape (1993), An Archaeology of Capitalism (1996, Blackwell), and Ideas Of Landscape (2006, Blackwell).

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Table of Contents

List of Figures vi

Acknowledgements viii

Preface: The Contradictions of Theory x

1 Common Sense is Not Enough 1

2 The 'New Archaeology' 12

3 Archaeology as a Science 35

4 Middle-range Theory, Ethnoarchaeology and Material Culture Studies 50

5 Culture and Process 68

6 Thoughts and Ideologies 89

7 Postprocessual and Interpretive Archaeologies 102

8 Archaeology, Gender and Identity 122

9 Archaeology and Cultural Evolution 143

10 Archaeology and Darwinian Evolution 164

11 Archaeology and History 185

12 Archaeology, Politics and Culture 199

13 Conclusion: The Future of Theory 216

Selective Glossary 236

Further Reading 245

Bibliography 265

Index 299

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