Introduction to Archaeology

Course Description: This course studies past cultures and societies through their material remains and explores how archaeologists use different field methods, analytical technique and theoretical approaches to investigate, reconstruct and learn from the past. Data from settlement surveys, site excavations and artifact analysis are used to address economic, social, political and ideological questions across time and space. This course is taught from an anthropological perspective, exploring key transitions in human prehistory, including the origins of food production, social inequality and state-level societies across the globe. Relevance of archaeological practice in modern political, economic and social contexts is explored.

Texts: Archaeology Essentials: Theories, Methods & Practice (Colin Renfrew & Paul Bahn, 2015); Ladies of the Field: Early Women Archaeologists & their Search for Adventure (Amanda Adams, 2010); Loot: The Battle over the Stolen Treasures of the Ancient World (Sharon Waxman, 2008); and a variety of additional journal articles and web resources.