Archaeological Theory Today / Edition 2

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Now in a revised and updated second edition, this volume provides an authoritative account of the current status of archaeological theory, as presented by some of its major exponents and innovators over recent decades. It summarizes the latest developments in the field and looks to its future, exploring some of the cutting-edge ideas at the forefront of the discipline.

The volume captures the diversity of contemporary archaeological theory. Some authors argue for an approach close to the natural sciences, others for an engagement with cultural debate about representation of the past. Some minimize the relevance of culture to societal change, while others see it as central; some focus on the contingent and the local, others on long-term evolution. While few practitioners in theoretical archaeology would today argue for a unified disciplinary approach, the authors in this volume increasingly see links and convergences between their perspectives.

The volume also reflects archaeology's new openness to external influences, as well as the desire to contribute to wider debates. The contributors examine ways in which archaeological evidence contributes to theories of evolutionary psychology, as well as to the social sciences in general, where theories of social relationships, agency, landscape and identity are informed by the long-term perspective of archaeology.

The new edition of Archaeological Theory Today will continue to be essential reading for students and scholars in archaeology and in the social sciences more generally.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"A crucial addition to contemporary debates in social sciences. Theway different methodological issues  are discussed, as well asthe dialogue between different contributors serve as an exemplaryway of promoting scholarship  of the highest standard."
Social Anthropology

"In Archaeological Theory Today, Ian Hodder has assembled afine collection of papers that, taken together, present a vibrantand exciting overview of current theoretical trends. Reading thisvolume, one is struck not just by the diversity of archaeologicaltheory today, but by its breadth, depth, and sheer intellectualvitality. This book is not just an overview of current thinking,but an eloquent statement of the importance of archaeology as amodern human science."
Matthew Johnson, Northwestern University

"Archaeology has changed dramatically since the early 1980s. Itis more inclusive, more holistic, and more relevant to the modernworld. These changes are the product of the interplay of internaldebates about epistemology and external discussions regardingsocial and political factors in the context of knowledgeproduction. This new edition interrogates standard assumptionsunderlying such oppositions as culture and agency, matter andmateriality, individual and society, colonial power and indigenousresistance, and, in the process, offers exciting new waysforward."
Robert W. Preucel, University of Pennsylvania

"In this new edition, valuable chapters on cognition/symbolism,agency, landscape, and post-colonial archaeology are revised andcarried on from the first edition. New chapters on materiality,behavioral ecology, complex systems, heritage, and indigenousknowledge (among others) are added. The new ATT admirablytakes the pulse of major and progressive trends in social theory byleading archaeologists."
Norman Yoffee, University of Nevada, Las Vegas

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780745653075
  • Publisher: Wiley
  • Publication date: 3/27/2012
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Edition number: 2
  • Pages: 320
  • Sales rank: 739,751
  • Product dimensions: 5.90 (w) x 8.90 (h) x 1.20 (d)

Meet the Author

Ian Hodder is Dunlevie Family Professor of Anthropology at Stanford University.

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Table of Contents

List of Figures and Tables
List of Contributors
1 Introduction: Contemporary Theoretical Debate inArchaeology
Ian Hodder
2 Darwinian Cultural Evolution
Stephen Shennan
3 Human Behavioral Ecology
Douglas W. Bird and James F. O'Connell
4 Behavioral Archaeology
Vincent M. LaMotta
5 Complex Systems and Archaeology
Timothy A. Kohler
6 Towards a Cognitive Archaeology: Material Engagement and theEarly Development of Society
Colin Renfrew
7 Agency: A Revisionist Account
John C. Barrett
8 Archaeologies of Place and Landscape
Julian Thomas
9 Materiality
Carl Knappett
10 Symmetrical Archaeology
Bjørnar Olsen
11 The Social Life of Heritage
Lynn Meskell
12 Post-Colonial Archaeology
Chris Gosden
13 Archaeology and Indigenous Collaboration
Chip Colwell-Chanthaphonh
14 Archaeological visualisation: early artefact illustration andthe birth of the archaeological image
Stephanie Moser

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