The Death of Archaeological Theory?

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  • Format: Paperback
  • Copyright: 2011-10-28
  • Publisher: David Brown Book Co
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The Death of Archaeological Theory? addresses the provocative subject of whether it is time to discount the burden of somewhat dogmatic theory and ideology that has built up over the last 25 years. Based on a highly successful EAA session, Bintliff and Pearce set out to discover whether "The Death of the Archaeological Theorist" might not be a liberating thought experiment and were astounded by the reaction they got, which suggests a grassroots questioning of the direction archaeological theory is taking. Just as Roland Barthes's call for "The Death of the Author" did not actually demand a complete neglect of authorial existence and intentions, so Bintliff and Pearce did not actually demand the intellectual execution of leading theorists and the neglect of theory manuals in archaeology. However, in the spirit of Barthes, they did ask that "readers" free themselves from the imposed tyranny of a single theoretical paradigm, arguing that reflexivity and eclecticism should be the watchwords for a future more democratic archaeological theory plus a healthy skepticism towards being told what to read and not to read. This volume contains a series of papers on the theme, some given at the conference, others commissioned afterwards. A wide range of theoretical opinions and geographical contexts are represented and the volume collects papers by John Bintliff, Kent V. Flannery and Joyce Marcus, Mark Pluciennik, Alexander Gramsch, Kristian Kristiansen and Mark Pearce.

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