Social Theory in Archaeology

Social Theory in Archaeology

by Michael Brian Schiffer
     
 

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Since the debut of the New Archaeology in the 1960s, approaches to the science of interpreting the material past have proliferated.

Seeking to find common ground in an increasingly fractious and polarized discipline, a group of archaeological theorists representing various schools of thought gathered in a roundtable, during the fall of 1997. As organizer, Michael

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Overview

Since the debut of the New Archaeology in the 1960s, approaches to the science of interpreting the material past have proliferated.

Seeking to find common ground in an increasingly fractious and polarized discipline, a group of archaeological theorists representing various schools of thought gathered in a roundtable, during the fall of 1997. As organizer, Michael Schiffer sought to build bridges that might begin to span the conceptual chasms that have formed in archaeology during the past few decades. Many participants in the roundtable accepted the challenge of building bridges, but some rejected the premise that bridge building is desirable or feasible. Even so, every chapter in the resulting volume contributes something provocative or significant to the enterprise of constructing social theory in archaeology and setting the agenda for future social-theoretic research.

With contributions from every major school of thought, whether informed by evolutionary theory, feminism, chaos theory, behavioralism, or post-processualism, this volume serves as both handbook to an array of theoretical approaches and as a useful look at each school’s response to criticism.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

"Social Theory in Archaeology is an important contribution to the theoretical debates in archaeology. Professional archaeologists will find it challenging and rewarding to read. It is an excellent book to use in graduate seminars because it raises fundamental questions about the nature and importance of social theory in archaeology."Journal of Anthropological Research

"Every chapter in Social Theory in Archaeology is well executed and worthy of a careful reading. As a collection, the volume spans the theoretical breadth of the field and will be useful reference for graduate-level classes in archaeological theory."—American Antiquity

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780874806427
Publisher:
University of Utah Press
Publication date:
05/28/2000
Series:
Foundations of Archaeological Inquiry Series
Edition description:
1st Edition
Pages:
248
Product dimensions:
7.00(w) x 10.00(h) x 0.90(d)

Meet the Author

Michael Brian Schiffer is professor of anthropology at the University of Arizona, Tucson. He is the author of Behavioral Archaeology (University of Utah Press, 1995) and Formation Processes of the Archaeological Record (University of Utah Press, 1996).

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