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Irrationality and Popular Archaeology

  • Kenneth L. Feder (a1)

An important aspect of archaeology is communicating the significance of data and research results to a fascinated, although often uninformed public. However, on the basis of book sales, newspaper coverage, television programming, and film presentations, it would seem that the public is inordinately fascinated by the more extreme, speculative, and often pseudoscientific claims made by those purporting to use archaeological data. Through questionnaires distributed to undergraduate students and to professional, teaching archaeologists, I made an attempt to comprehend the nature of the public's appetite for pseudoscientific archaeological claims. The role of education in refuting or perpetuating pseudoscience in archaeology was then assessed.

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American Antiquity
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