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Introduction to Archaeology. The Beginnings of Scientific Archaeology… Theories and More. So what is Archaeology?. Goals of Archaeology. Conserving and managing the worlds archaeological sites for the future

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Introduction to archaeology

Introduction to Archaeology

The Beginnings of Scientific Archaeology…

Theories and More


So what is archaeology

So what is Archaeology?


Goals of archaeology

Goals of Archaeology

Conserving and managing the worlds archaeological sites for the future

Studying sites and their contents in a context of time and space to reconstruct human culture.

Reconstructing past lifeways or the ways in which people made their living in the changing environments of the past which has developed into a major goal of archaeology.

Explaining why cultures change (or stay the same).

Understanding sites, artifacts, remains and other aspects of the archaeological record.


Theories

Theories


Creationism

Creationism

What is Creationism? Creationism is the idea that a higher power, in many cases God, created man and placed them here on earth along with the animals and plants and everything that is present today. It argues that all life on earth was been created exactly as it is in the present, and any alterations would run counter to God’s plan.

Fixity of species.

Great Chain of Being

Essentialism

Grand Design.


Evolution

Evolution

What is Evolution? Evolution is the theory in which humans evolved, or changed over time, from a common ancestor.


Evolutionary theories

Evolutionary Theories

John Ray (1627-1705), an ordained minister, was the first to identify species.

In 1735 a Swedish botanist named CarolusLinneaus (1707-1778) wrote a book called “systemaNaturae” or System of Nature, where he classified all animals.


Key contributors to the theory of evolution cont d

Key Contributors to the Theory of Evolution Cont’d

Comte de Buffon (1707-1788), in 1749, developed the theory of “degeneration”

Erasmus Darwin (1731-1802) (Charles grandfather) also began to express ideas of natural selection and evolutionary thought.


Key contributors to the theory of evolution cont d1

Key Contributors to the Theory of Evolution Cont’d

Jean-Baptiste Lamarck (1744-1829) was the first European to come up with an organic theory of evolution

Thomas Malthus (1766-1834), in 1798, argued that human populations double every 25 years, it increases exponentially while food production remains stable, thereby creating a struggle for existence


Key contributors to the theory of evolution cont d2

Key Contributors to the Theory of Evolution Cont’d

James Hutton, a geologist, argued in his work Theory of Earth in 1784, that the earth was formed entirely by natural processes not by a divine flood of global proportions.

His work was later refined by Charles Lyll in 1833. There view that the earth had been formed completely from natural processes that are still in operation today became known as Uniformitarianism.


Key contributors to the theory of evolution cont d3

Key Contributors to the Theory of Evolution Cont’d

George Cuvier (1769-1832), developed the theory of catastrophism in 1830

Russell Wallace developed the theory of evolution based on natural selection simultaneous to Darwin.


Darwin s theory

Darwin’s Theory

  • Species produce offspring faster than the food supply increases

  • No two individuals of a species are exactly alike

  • Because there are so many individuals in a species there is a struggle for existence, favorable characteristics will survive

  • Those favorable characteristics are inherited and passed on

  • Over long periods of time those successful variations will produce new species


From biological theory to social theory

From Biological Theory to Social Theory

Herbert Spencer (1820-1903) argued that human progress is not an accident, that social institutions progress from a simple form to a complex form and that each culture passes through these same phases.

This idea fine tuned by Spencer, Edward B Tylor (1832-1917) and Lewis Henry Morgan (1818-1881) was known as Unilinear Cultural Evolution .

Unilinear Cultural Evolution “Stage”

“savage” stage as hunters and gathers

“barbaric” stage of farming

“civilized” stage of modern western culture.


Diffusionist theory

Diffusionist Theory

Suggests that culture change and human origin was based on population movement.

This idea was in direct reaction against the unilinear models.


Historical particularism

Historical Particularism

Historical Particularism, a widespread reaction against sweeping generalizations about culture change brought on by the Unilinear Cultural Evolutionists ( Herbert Spencer, Edward Tylor, and Lewis Henry Morgan).

In the United States this movement, known as Historical Particularism, was led by the anthropologist Franz Boas.

Historical Particularismcarefully and scientifically catalogued cultural data and was used to plot culture areas


Culture history

Culture History

Culture History- the scientific cataloguing to determine the what, when, and where events took place

The conceptual framework of the cultural history approach emphasized the goal of outlining sequence (time dimension) and geographical distribution (space dimension) of past cultures.


Culture history1

Culture History

  • Components- The component unit consists of grouping similar artifacts that distinguishes the culture of the inhabitants of a particular time and place.

  • Phases – Phases are cultural units represented by grouping similar artifacts and cultural traits in the same space over a short period of time.

  • Culture areas- A culture area is a geographic region characterized by fairly uniform environment and culture.

  • Traditions- Traditions are social organization, customs, beliefs, and material culture that distinguish an area for a long period of time.

  • Horizons- Horizons are distinctive artifacts and cultural traits that cross traditions into neighboring areas allowing the assumption that they spread rapidly.


Cultural ecology

Cultural Ecology

Julian Steward (1902-1972) developed the idea of Cultural Ecology and the theory of Multilinear Cultural Evolution


Multilinear cultural evolution

Multilinear Cultural Evolution.

Multilinear cultural evolution- cultures pass through similar stages at different rates, not on a universal track, of cultural development based on their environment.

  • Cultural ecology defined by three principles

    • Similar adaptations can be found in different cultures living in similar environments

    • No culture as adapted to their environment and have since remained unchanged (culture is constantly changing and adapting)

    • Adaptations during periods of cultural development in any area can either add to the complexity of society or result in new cultural patterns.


Descriptive culture models

Descriptive Culture Models

The primary basis for interpretation of culture history depended on descriptive culture models. These models are:

  • Inevitable variation

  • Cultural Selection

  • Invention

  • Diffusion

  • Migration


Disadvantages of culture history

Disadvantages of Culture History

In 1948 Walter Taylor (1913-1997) wrote A Study of Archaeology.

Archaeologists started reassessing the objectives of their research.


The new archaeology

The New Archaeology

A pioneer in this new an revised view of the past was Lewis Binford.

The New Archaeology advocated for rigorous scientific testing using formal scientific methods including testing for hypothesis.


Processual archaeology

Processual Archaeology

This approach was in direct contrast to the descriptive approaches of the past.

Focuses on Cultural Materialism


Post processual archaeology

Post Processual Archaeology

In the 1970’s a new approach emerged called Postprocessual archaeology

Postprocessual archaeology has made three important contributions to the field.


So where are we today

So where are we today?


Introduction to archaeology1

Introduction to Archaeology

Ch 2

The Beginnings of Scientific Archaeology…

Theories and More


Why is it important to know prehistory prior to beginning a study in archaeology

Why is it important to know prehistory prior to beginning a study in archaeology?

Archaeologists want to learn about people across all space and all time through the location and interpretation of material remains.


Human origins

Human Origins

2.5 million years ago the first tool making human appeared in Africa

1.5 millions years prior to that earlier hominids occupied the region as earlier as

Around 1.9 million years ago, humanity moved out of Africa into Asia and Europe changing and adapting to their environments along the way.

Around 750,000 years ago, the human population was no more then a few tens of thousands of people.

By about 100,000 years ago, those modern humans were “fully developed”

By about 40,000 to 15,000 years ago, humans occupied every corner of the globe.


So what is archaeology1

So what is Archaeology?

Archaeology:the study of material remains and human cultures using archaeological theory and techniques.

Essentially, archaeology is the study of the human past.


Goals of archaeology1

Goals of Archaeology

Conserving and managing the worlds archaeological sites for the future

Studying sites and their contents in a context of time and space to reconstruct human culture.

Reconstructing past lifeways or the ways in which people made their living in the changing environments of the past which has developed into a major goal of archaeology.

Explaining why cultures change (or stay the same).

Understanding sites, artifacts, remains and other aspects of the archaeological record.


History of archaeology

History of Archaeology

The first archaeologists were adventurers.

Some early archaeologist dug for profit other to satisfy their intellectual curiosity, yet archaeology has come a long way since then.

It has moved from an amateur’s pastime to a scientifically based occupation.


Archaeology in the contemporary world

Archaeology in the Contemporary World

Archaeology has important lessons about human diversity to impart in today’s world.

Relationships between individuals and groups have been established and important in society since the beginning of man.

Archaeology has a way of reconstructing the past thereby contributing to modern day development.


Creationism1

Creationism

What is Creationism? Creationism is the idea that a higher power, in many cases God, created man and placed them here on earth along with the animals and plants and everything that is present today. It argues that all life on earth was been created exactly as it is in the present, and any alterations would run counter to God’s plan.

Fixity of species.

Great Chain of Being

Essentialism

Grand Design.


Evolution1

Evolution

What is Evolution? Evolution is the theory in which humans evolved, or changed over time, from a common ancestor.


Evolutionary theories1

Evolutionary Theories

John Ray (1627-1705), an ordained minister, was the first to identify species.

In 1735 a Swedish botanist named CarolusLinneaus (1707-1778) wrote a book called “systemaNaturae” or System of Nature, where he classified all animals.


Key contributors to the theory of evolution cont d4

Key Contributors to the Theory of Evolution Cont’d

Comte de Buffon (1707-1788), in 1749, developed the theory of “degeneration”

Erasmus Darwin (1731-1802) (Charles grandfather) also began to express ideas of natural selection and evolutionary thought.


Key contributors to the theory of evolution cont d5

Key Contributors to the Theory of Evolution Cont’d

Jean-Baptiste Lamarck (1744-1829) was the first European to come up with an organic theory of evolution

Thomas Malthus (1766-1834), in 1798, argued that human populations double every 25 years, it increases exponentially while food production remains stable, thereby creating a struggle for existence


Key contributors to the theory of evolution cont d6

Key Contributors to the Theory of Evolution Cont’d

James Hutton, a geologist, argued in his work Theory of Earth in 1784, that the earth was formed entirely by natural processes not by a divine flood of global proportions.

His work was later refined by Charles Lyll in 1833. There view that the earth had been formed completely from natural processes that are still in operation today became known as Uniformitarianism.


Key contributors to the theory of evolution cont d7

Key Contributors to the Theory of Evolution Cont’d

George Cuvier (1769-1832), developed the theory of catastrophism in 1830

Russell Wallace developed the theory of evolution based on natural selection simultaneous to Darwin.


Darwin

Darwin

  • Charles Darwin began to formulate this theory of evolution while aboard the HMS Beagle.

  • Darwin boarded the Beagle being a staunch believer in fixity of species.

  • During a stopover in the Galapagos Islands, Darwin noted the flora and the fauna of S. America showed striking similarities to those in the Galapagos.

  • Darwin collected 13 different varieties of finches, these finches shared similarities and clearly represented a closely affiliated group

  • This lead Darwin to believe that the finches had all descended from a common, mainland ancestor, and had become modified in response to the varying environments of the islands.


Darwin s theory1

Darwin’s Theory

  • Species produce offspring faster than the food supply increases

  • No two individuals of a species are exactly alike

  • Because there are so many individuals in a species there is a struggle for existence, favorable characteristics will survive

  • Those favorable characteristics are inherited and passed on

  • Over long periods of time those successful variations will produce new species


From biological theory to social theory1

From Biological Theory to Social Theory

Herbert Spencer (1820-1903) argued that human progress is not an accident, that social institutions progress from a simple form to a complex form and that each culture passes through these same phases.

This idea fine tuned by Spencer, Edward B Tylor (1832-1917) and Lewis Henry Morgan (1818-1881) was known as Unilinear Cultural Evolution .

Unilinear Cultural Evolution “Stage”

“savage” stage as hunters and gathers

“barbaric” stage of farming

“civilized” stage of modern western culture.


Diffusionist theory1

Diffusionist Theory

The diffusion theory suggests that culture change and human origin is based on population movements, migration, and invasion.

This idea was in direct reaction against the unilinear models.


Historical particularism1

Historical Particularism

Historical Particularism, a widespread reaction against sweeping generalizations about culture change brought on by the Unilinear Cultural Evolutionsits ( Herbert Spencer, Edward Tylor, and Lewis Henry Morgan).

Instead of presuming that some cultures were more evolved than others, this new idea argued to regard all cultures as unique in time and place.

In the United States this movement, known as Historical Particularism, was led by the anthropologist Franz Boas.


Historical particularism2

Historical Particularism

  • Historical Particularismcarefully and scientifically catalogued cultural data and was used to plot culture areas

  • Historical Particularism has influenced how researchers interpreted archaeological data. This cataloging of data using scientific methods served as a basis for interpreting this data using a variety of theoretical perspectives.

  • Culture History, or the description, chronological, and spatial ordering of data


Culture history2

Culture History

  • Components- The component unit consists of grouping similar artifacts that distinguishes the culture of the inhabitants of a particular time and place.

  • Phases – Phases are cultural units represented by grouping similar artifacts and cultural traits in the same space over a short period of time.

  • Culture areas- A culture area is a geographic region characterized by fairly uniform environment and culture.

  • Traditions- Traditions are social organization, customs, beliefs, and material culture that distinguish an area for a long period of time.

  • Horizons- Horizons are distinctive artifacts and cultural traits that cross traditions into neighboring areas allowing the assumption that they spread rapidly.


Cultural ecology1

Cultural Ecology

Julian Steward (1902-1972) developed the idea of Cultural Ecology an theory of Multilinear Cultural Evolution that simply stated societies do pass through similar stages of cultural development but this development was based on their environment.


Multilinear cultural evolution1

Multilinear Cultural Evolution.

In the late 1930s anthropologist Julian Steward asked, “are there ways of identifying common cultural features in many sites distributed over man cultural areas?”

Multilinear cultural evolution- cultures pass through similar stages at different rates, not on a universal track, of cultural development based on their environment.

  • Cultural ecology and defined the three principles as

    • Similar adaptations can be found in different cultures living in similar environments

    • No culture as adapted to their environment and have since remained unchanged (culture is constantly changing and adapting)

    • Adaptations during periods of cultural development in any area can either add to the complexity of society or result in new cultural patterns.


Culture history3

Culture History

Culture History- the scientific cataloguing to determine the what, when, and where events took place

The conceptual framework of the cultural history approach emphasized the goal of outlining sequence (time dimension) and geographical distribution (space dimension) of past cultures.

The primary basis for interpretation of culture history depended on descriptive culture models. These models are: inevitable variation, cultural selection, invention, diffusion, and migration and are used to describe an reconstruct the past.


Descriptive culture models1

Descriptive Culture Models

  • Inevitable variation Small changes in learned behavior passed down from generation to generation, ultimately, over time, greatly affect ones culture.

  • Cultural Selection is the selection of cultural traits on the basis of whether they are advantageous to the society as a whole.

  • Invention is simply a new idea. This new idea either modifies an old idea or creates a completely new idea.

  • Diffusion is the method by which new ideas or changes in culture spread, usually over long distances. It can result from mechanisms such as warfare, trade, and general travel.

  • Migration is the actual movement of human populations. English settlers moving to the North American continent, Spanish conquistadors conquering and moving into Mexico, etc.


Disadvantages of culture history1

Disadvantages of Culture History

In 1948 Walter Taylor (1913-1997)wrote a very eye opening essay titled A Study of Archaeology.

Archaeologists started reassessing the objectives of their research.

This self critique occurred right around the time of other technological innovations such as the computer C14 dating methods, and new methods for locating and identifying archaeological sites.

All these changes brought about a new approach to understanding archaeological evidence.


The new archaeology1

The New Archaeology

A pioneer in this new an revised view of the past was Lewis Binford.

In the 1960s Binford wrote a series of articles that stressed the importance of theory and strictly defined the close links between archaeology and anthropology.

This demand for change within the profession in addition to the technological advances taking place was seen by many as the New Archaeology.

The New Archaeology advocated for rigorous scientific testing using formal scientific methods including testing for hypothesis.


Processual archaeology1

Processual Archaeology

Processual archaeology focuses on the cultural process and the explaining of culture change through explicitly scientific methods (the how and why past events took place).

This approach was in direct contrast to the descriptive approaches of the past.

Cultural Materialism

holds that there are biological and psychological needs common to all humans…How societies meet these needs in the means in which to evaluate the cultures adaptive efficiency


Post processual archaeology1

Post Processual Archaeology

In the 1970’s a more Holistic archaeology was born, which did take into consideration ecological, technological, human conscience, religious and worldviews, and human body limitations. The new approach was called Postprocessual archaeology


Post processual continued

Post Processual Continued

Postprocessual archaeology has made three important contributions to the field:

  • Meaning is more important than materialism.

  • Archaeologist must examine their social responsibilities and look to the broader aims of the discipline.

  • There are many perspectives on our historic past that have been neglected (minorities, women, etc)… archaeology is the voice of many, not just one!


So where are we today1

So where are we today?

Modern archaeology consists of a variety of theoretical perspectives and approaches that share aspects of cultural history approaches, processual approaches, and post processual approaches.


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