By Eberhard W. Sauer

Challenging either conventional and stylish theories, this choice of items from a global variety of individuals explores the separation of the human previous into background, archaeology and their comparable sub-disciplines.

Each case research demanding situations the validity of this separation and asks how we will circulate to a extra holistic process within the learn of the connection among background and archaeology.

While the point of interest is at the historic global, fairly Greece and Rome, rhe classes learnded during this ebook make it an crucial addition to all experiences of background and archaeology.

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Extra resources for Archaeology and ancient history : breaking down the boundaries

Sample text

Consequently, it is equally important for both (the majority of) archaeologists involved in fieldwork and those limiting themselves purely to theory or interpretation to be familiar with material evidence and written sources alike. If we intend neither to ignore one category of evidence entirely nor to pay equal attention to both, where do we draw the line? Should the archaeologist consider all the archaeological evidence and just include written sources when it is impossible to avoid them? And should the historian dealing with the same subject take the opposite approach?

But, equally, social scientists whose concerns are the most abstract and general theories about social life, are not freed from the hermeneutic demands of the interpretation of texts and other cultural objects. Historical research is cultural research and vice versa. (Giddens 1984: 357–8) This is a crucial point: Giddens argues that there is no difference between social science and history. Historians in his definition also include those who specialize in particular types of textual materials (which must include philologists, papyrologists and epigraphists) and, notably, he makes no distinction between the study of texts and of ‘cultural objects’.

Archaeology would allow us to trace population movements from central and eastern Europe to western Europe and the western half of the Mediterranean in the fifth and sixth centuries. That even holds true if we focus on territories where the immigrants made up only a very small percentage of the overall population, such as in Italy. I am not aware, however, of any material evidence that would suggest that Italy was under Germanic rule for 60–80 years before the reconquest under Justinian. I exclude coins, since they bear legends and are not material evidence in a narrow definition.

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