Linking to the Past: A Brief Introduction to Archaeology / Edition 2

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Overview

Linking to the Past: A Brief Introduction to Archaeology offers a new and exciting way for students to learn about the methods that archaeologists use to reveal the human past. Featuring an innovative "hyperlink" format of interconnected ideas, anecdotes, and lessons, the text and its accompanying CD provide an engaging introduction to archaeology. Employing an accessible and conversational writing style, Kenneth L. Feder describes the archaeological excavation and analysis of a three-thousand-year-old village site located in Connecticut. Woven into this narrative is an overview of the methods archaeologists use to find, recover, study, and interpret the material culture left behind by past people. The narrative serves as a framework that lends students into general questions about how archaeologists work, such as How do archaeologists find sites? How do they know how old a site is? and How can they trace the sources of raw materials? These questions are addressed throughout the book.
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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

"A groundbreaking archaeology textbook. . ."--Marcello Canuto, Yale University (pre-publication review)

"When you start to relate to students what archaeology is about, using your own work as an example, you are constantly obliged to take sometimes substantial detours into various side topics to explain basic archaeological concepts. . . . The hyperlink format has the advantage of making the detours available while leaving it to the individual reader to decide which detours are needed and when they will be taken."--Shannon McPherron, George Washington University (pre-publication review)

"There really isn't anything on the market at the present that does what [the author] is attempting to do. Although there are many CD and internet-based resources on archaeological topics, his is the only one that has a legitimate interest in walking students through the various levels of decision-making that all archaeologists face in the field."--Cameron Wesson, University of Illinois at Chicago (pre-publication review)

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780195331172
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press
  • Publication date: 12/21/2007
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Edition number: 2
  • Pages: 496
  • Sales rank: 1,066,181
  • Product dimensions: 9.10 (w) x 6.10 (h) x 1.10 (d)

Table of Contents

PROLOGUE: THE PAST IN THE PRESENT
Archaeology: The Study of the Human Past
The Context of Antiquity
Shadow of the Past
CHAPTER 1. HOW I SPENT MY SUMMER VACATION: FINDING, EXCAVATING, AND INTERPRETING THE WOOD LILY SITE IN NORTH-CENTRAL CONNECTICUT
A Biography of Archaeology (Chapter 2)
What Archaeologists Want to Know (Chapter 3)
Doing Archaeology: Practical Considerations (Chapter 4)
A Community's Shadow: The Archaeological Site (Chapter 5)
Searching for the Past: Archaeological Site Survey (Chapter 6)
Revealing the Past: The Archaeological Excavation (Chapter 7)
Linked Slide Show
Interpreting the Past: Gauging the Age of an Archaeological Site (Chapter 8)
Interpreting the Past: The Environmental Contexts of Antiquity (Chapter 9)
Technology: How People Made Things (Chapter 10)
Putting Food on the Table: Reconstructing Ancient Diets (Chapter 11)
Families, Neighbors,and Strangers: Reconstructing Ancient Social Systems (Chapter 12)
Conversing with the Dead: Bioarchaeology (Chapter 13)
Wood Lily: Archaeological Portrait of a Life (Chapter 14)
CHAPTER 2. A BIOGRAPHY OF ARCHAEOLOGY
What Is Archaeology?
What Do We Mean by the Term Culture?
Is Archaeology a Science?
How Did Archaeology Get Started in the First Place?
Why Is Archaeology in the Anthropology Department?
Linked Interactive Exercise
How Do You Get to Be an Archaeologist?
Who Owns the Past?
What Kinds of People Go into Archaeology?
CHAPTER 3. WHAT ARCHAEOLOGISTS WANT TO KNOW
What Kinds of Research Goals Do Archaeologists Have?
Linked Interactive Exercise
What Is It That Archaeologists Want to Find Out?
Is Garbage Really All That Informative on the Subject of Human Behavior?
CHAPTER 4. DOING ARCHAEOLOGY: PRACTICAL CONSIDERATIONS
What Determines Where an Archaeologist Investigates in the First Place?
How Is Archaeological Research Funded, and Why?
What Laws Regulate Where Archaeologists Can Dig?
What Are the Ethical Obligations of Archaeologists?
Linked Interactive Exercise
Who Gets to Dig at an Archaeological Site?
Is Archaeology Really a Dangerous Pursuit?
CHAPTER 5. A COMMUNITY'S SHADOW: THE ARCHAEOLOGICAL SITE
What Is an "Archaeological Site" and How Do You Know When You've Found One?
Linked Slide Show
What Kinds of Stuff Do Archaeologists Find at Sites?
How Are Archaeological Sites Made?
Why Do Archaeologists Need to Dig; Why Are Most Sites Buried?
How Are Archaeological Sites Altered Once Buried?
CHAPTER 6. SEARCHING FOR THE PAST: ARCHAEOLOGICAL SITE SURVEY
How Do Archaeologists Know Where to Look for Sites?
Linked Interactive Exercise
How Can GIS Help Identify Places Where Sites Are Likely to Be Found?
What Are the Mechanics of Looking for and Finding Sites?
Linked Slide Show
What Forms the Basis of an Archaeological "Sampling Strategy"?
How Can You Find Archaeological Sites Just by Walking Around?
How Deep Do You Have to Dig to Find Archaeological Material?
How Can Archaeologists Probe the Subsurface Without Digging Holes?
CHAPTER 7. REVEALING THE PAST: THE ARCHAEOLOGICAL EXCAVATION
How Is Archaeological Research Like Detective Work?
How Do You Measure and Record the Precise Location of a Site?
How Are Archaeological Sites Named?
How Do Archaeologists Excavate Sites?
Linked Slide Show
Why Are Archaeologists So Painstaking and Slow in Excavation?
What Tools Do Archaeologists Use to Expose and Recover Artifacts?
What Is an Excavation Unit and How Is It Labeled?
How Do Archaeologists Keep Track of Where Stuff Is Found at Sites?
Why Do Archaeologists Save All the Tiny Scraps of Stone, Bone, and Other Stuff?
How Can You Determine the Size of an Ancient Habitation?
What Preliminary Work Goes into an Archaeology Laboratory?
CHAPTER 8. INTERPRETING THE PAST: GAUGING THE AGE OF AN ARCHAEOLOGICAL SITE
How Old Does Something Have to Be in Order to Be Considered "Archaeological" in the First Place?
How Do Archaeologists Know How Old Artifacts and Sites Are?
What Are Relative Dating Techniques?
How Can You Date Sites by Stratigraphic Analysis?
How Can You Determine a Relative Date for a Site by Reference to Artifact Style?
What Are Chronometric or Absolute Dating Methods?
How Does Dendrochronology Work?
What Are the Most Commonly Used Radiometric Dating Methods Relied on by Archaeologists?
Linked Interactive Exercise
How Can the Shifting Location Of Magnetic North Be Used to Date Sites?
How Can You Determine an Absolute Date for a Site by Reference to Style?
CHAPTER 9. INTERPRETING THE PAST: THE ENVIRONMENTAL CONTEXTS OF ANTIQUITY
Why Do Archaeologists Want to Know About Ancient Environments?
Does the Environment Cause Certain Adaptations?
How Do Archaeologists Reconstruct the Environment?
How Can Little Creatures Called Foraminifera Tell Us About Climate Change?
What's Pollen Good For, Besides Making Us Sneeze?
What Is a Pollen Profile?
Linked Slide Show
How Can You Identify Tree Species from Bits of Burned Wood?
CHAPTER 10. TECHNOLOGY: HOW PEOPLE MADE THINGS
How Do Archaeologists Figure Out How Ancient People Made Things?
Linked Slide Show
How Did Ancient People Make Stone Tools?
What Are the Characteristics That Make a Rock Type Attractive to Stone Tool Makers?
Why Is Pottery of Such Great Importance to Archaeologists?
How Do You Make A Pot?
How Can You Determine the Source of a Raw Material Used by Ancient People?
How Do Archaeologists Figure Out the Function of an Ancient Tool?
Linked Interactive Exercise
How Do Archaeologists Examine Tools Made of Raw Materials Other Than Stone or Clay?
How Do Archaeologists Investigate the Technology of Monumental Construction?
CHAPTER 11. PUTTING FOOD ON THE TABLE: RECONSTRUCTING ANCIENT DIETS
Why Do Archaeologists Want to Know What Foods Were Eaten by Ancient People?
How Do Archaeologists Know What Foods Ancient People Ate?
How Do Archaeologists Identify the Source of Fragmentary Organic Remains Found at Archaeological Sites?
How Can You Tell What Kind of Animal Was Killed or Butchered with an Ancient Stone Tool?
How Can You Tell What Kinds of Plants Were Collected or Processed with an Ancient Stone Tool?
How Can You Determine the Importance of an Animal Species in a People's Diet?
Can Human Waste Be Used to Help Reconstruct Diet?
How Does Skeletal Chemistry Help Us Reconstruct an Ancient Diet?
How Can the Season of a Settlement's Occupation Be Determined?
Linked Interactive Exercise
CHAPTER 12. FAMILIES, NEIGHBORS, AND STRANGERS: RECONSTRUCTING ANCIENT SOCIAL SYSTEMS
Can Archaeologists Figure Out the Social Relationships of Past People?
Linked Exercise
Can Archaeologists Figure Out the Roles of Males and Females in Ancient Societies?
How Does an Archaeologist Approach Issues of Economic, Social, and Political Inequality in an Ancient Society?
How Is Ethnicity Reflected in the Archaeological Record?
Can Archaeologists Reconstruct Ancient Religious Practices?
How Are Rituals Preserved in the Archaeological Record?
How Do Archaeologists Trace the Movement of People and Ideas Across a Social Landscape?
How Can Archaeologists Reveal Ways of Life of People Whose Reality Was So Different from Our Own?
CHAPTER 13. CONVERSING WITH THE DEAD: BIOARCHAEOLOGY
Why Are Archaeologists Interested in Human Bones?
Why Is the Excavation of Human Skeletons a Contentious Issue?
How Can You Determine the Sex of a Person from His or Her Skeleton?
How Can You Determine the Age of a Person from His or Her Skeleton?
Linked Interactive Exercises (2)
How Can You Determine the Health of a Person from His or Her Skeleton?
How Can You Determine the Ethnic Identity of a Person from His or Her Skeleton?
How Can You Determine the Geographic Location of Where Someone Was Born and Grew Up?
CHAPTER 14. WOOD LILY: ARCHAEOLOGICAL PORTRAIT OF A LIFE
The Environment of Wood Lily
The Wood Lily Larder: Food for Thought
Making Tools at Wood Lily
Linked Slide Show
Wood Lily Lives
EPILOGUE: CAN WE CONSTRUCT THE PAST
Glossary
Bibliography
Index

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