diggingAnthropology 481

Development of Anthropological Archaeology

Offered next in Fall 2012


trowelCourse description

A survey and historical examination of the approaches and practices used in archaeology from earliest times to present. Topics to be examined include the 18th and 19th century roots of archaeology (antiquarianism, the rediscovery of the Classical world, natural philosophy, uniformitarian geology), the contributions of biological evolutionary theory, the discovery of a prehistoric past (from the antiquity of humans to ancient civilizations), epigraphy, the relation of general anthropological theory to archaeological practice, culture historical reconstruction (dating, cultural variation and change, typological theory), attempts to model past human behaviour, the impact of chronometric dating, processual and post-processual archaeology, and current issues (ideology, nationalism, gender, rediscovery of evolutionary theory, etc.). Prerequisite: Anthropology 206 and one 300- or 400 level course in Anthropology, or consent of the department.


Required text

Bruce Trigger, 2006, A History of Archaeological Thought, second edition. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.


Course outline


Course bibliography



archaeologistClick here for a list of websites discussing archaeologists and their research. As selected by members of the Anthropology 481 class in Fall 2002.


bovid skullRelated web sites


Ian Hodder's web site.

Ian Hodder's field research at Catal Huyuk, a Neolithic site in Turkey.

Alison Wylie's web site. A philosopher of science, Wylie has contributed to discussions of post-processual archaeology and general archaeological theory.

A brief history of archaeology. By John W. Hoopes.

Archaeologist leaves an imprint on his field - without research. Article about Brian Fagan by M. Balter. Science 305(5690): 1555, September 9, 2004.

Introduction to archaeology. Web site about history of archaeology.

Diane Gifford Gonzalez's UCSC course on history of archaeology.

History of archaeology at About.com.

History of archaeology at the Learning Network

History of archaeology..A discussion of processual versus post-processual archaeology.

A century of collecting at the Hearst Museum of Anthropology, University of California at Berkeley.

Subject Centre for History, Classics and Archaeology. Part of the Learning and Teaching Support Network (LTSN) for higher education in the United Kingdom.

Anthropology in the news. Good site for news stories about all kinds of anthropology.

The Archaeology Channel. Online videos and more.

Archaeology on the Net.

Archnet: archaeological method and theory.

Archives of European Archaeology. Research network for the history of archaeology.

At the edge. History of research, discussion of cognitive archaeology.

Interviews with annual meeting speakers, Society for California Archaeology. David Hurst Thomas (1997), Lynne Goldstein (1998), Ian Hodder (1999), Anna Roosevelt (2000), Brian Fagan (2002), Ruth Tringham (2003) and John Rick (2004).

Prehistoric archaeology of the Aegean.

Who owns the past? Discussion about Kennewick man and the history of race in North American anthropology. From PBS.

Channel 4 (UK). Great Excavations. Companion site to John Romer's television series about the history of archaeology. Includes (1) "Stones and bones" about Mary Leakey and human origins research in Africa, (2) "Treasure seekers" about the history of grave robbing and ransacking in the 16th and 17th centuries; (3) "One beginning?" about the origin of civilization, (4) "Digging by the book" discussing the archaeological evidence for Homer's Illiad and Odyssey as well as the Bible, (5) "State servants", how the state has used archaeology, and (6) "New pasts", about processual archaeology and later developments.

Minnesota State University, Mankato's E-museum site includes this site "Anthropology Biography Web" with individual biographies of anthropologists and archaeologists.

Information on history of archaeology. At Factmonster.com.

History of archaeological techniques by Julian Richards. For the BBC.

BBC History Trail (archaeology). Discusses the history of archaeology from the British perspective.

History of archaeology. Book and article references about the history of archaeology.

History of North American archaeology.

Forensic archaeology by Benjamin Neil.

The teaching company. Go here and link to various archaeological subjects.

How much do you know about archaeology? at HistoryTelevision.ca.

Archaeology at the edge of chaos by Adrian Chadwick. Search for more reflexive excavation methods Critique of Hodder and post-processualism..

The King's Kunstkammer. Virtual recreatrion of the Royal Art Museum, Copenhagen, Denmark. Linked to page about Ole Worm and his museum.

The public's treasures - cabinets of curiosities. New York Public Library.

Winckelmann - the first modern art historian. UBC Library.

Liverpool Museums virtual exhibit about George Romney, 1734-1802, British artist. painted many portraits of Emma Hamilton.

National Maritime Museum, Greenwich, England. The naval history of Great Britain, including a detailed history of Admiral Horatio Nelson, Sir William and Lady Hamilton.

The crusade against evolution by Evan Ratliff. Wired Magazine, October 2004. Think natural theology is dead? Think again.

A century of PaleoIndian archaeology in the Southwest. By J. B. Mabry.

Theory.org.uk. A new tack on theory in social science. Check out the theory trading cards and theorist action figures.


explorerArchaeological and related associations

American Anthropological Association website.

Archaeological Institute of America. Publishers of Archaeology Magazine.

Association for Environmental Archaeology (AEA).

Association of Archaeological Illustrators and Surveyors. British group for the encouragement of methods and techniques for the visual presentation of archaeological data.

Association of Historical Archaeologists of the Pacific Northwest.

Canadian Archaeological Association.

Canadian Association of Professional Heritage Consultants.

ChacmoolChacmool. University of Calgary Archaeological Association. The students of the Department of Archaeology at the University of Calgary run the Chacmool Archaeology Conference every November.

Deutsches Archaologisches Institut (German Archaeological Institute).

English Heritage.

European Association of Archaeologists.

European Association of Archaeologists. 2002 conference information (Thessaloniki, Greece).

Friends of America's Past.

Institute of Field Archaeologists. British organization of archaeologists.

Oxford University Museum of Natural History.

Royal Canadian Geographical Society.

Society for American Archaeology

Society of Antiquaries of London. Since 1734.

Society for California Archaeology.

Society for Historical Archaeology.

TAG = Theoretical Archaeology Group 2002 conference information (Manchester, UK)..

US National Park Service journal "Cultural Resource Management".

US Organizations and State Historical Preservation Offices (SHPO).


shovelEmployment information for archaeologists


British Archaeological Jobs Resource Web page.. Also comes with on-line games.




explorer stereotypeArchaeological journals

African Archaeological Review. Papers on African prehistory.

American Antiquity. New World prehistory, but occasionally articles on Old World subjects.

Antiquity. British general archaeological journal; world coverage.

Archaeological Dialogues. Journal dealing with interpretive, theoretical, methodological, historical and political aspects of contemporary archaeology.

Bulletin of the History of Archaeology. Now published at LaTrobe University, Victoria, Australia.

Cambridge Archaeological Journal. Follow links to journal. Many papers on the beginnings of symbolic behaviour and the Middle/Upper Palaeolithic transition.

Current Anthropology. Articles with CA comment by other specialists. Many papers on modern human cultural origins.

Geoarchaeology. Articles on palaeoenvironments, geology and archaeology.

Journal of Anthropological Archaeology. Available from Science Direct through the University of Alberta e-journals list

Journal of Anthropological Research.

Journal of Archaeological Method and Theory.

Journal of Archaeological Science. Archaeometry papers. Available from Science Direct through the University of Alberta e-journals list

Journal of World Prehistory. Review papers summarizing culture history for specific regions.

Oxford Journal of Archaeology. Find through University of Alberta e-journals list.


World Archaeology. Each issue on a single theme. Find through University of Alberta e-journals list.


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