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A History of Archaeological Thought

2nd Edition

  • Date Published: November 2006
  • availability: Available
  • format: Paperback
  • isbn: 9780521600491


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About the Authors
  • In its original edition, Bruce Trigger's book was the first ever to examine the history of archaeological thought from medieval times to the present in world-wide perspective. Now, in this new edition, he both updates the original work and introduces new archaeological perspectives and concerns. At once stimulating and even-handed, it places the development of archaeological thought and theory throughout within a broad social and intellectual framework. The successive but interacting trends apparent in archaeological thought are defined and the author seeks to determine the extent to which these trends were a reflection of the personal and collective interests of archaeologists as these relate - in the West at least - to the fluctuating fortunes of the middle classes. While subjective influences have been powerful, Professor Trigger argues that the gradual accumulation of archaeological data has exercised a growing constraint on interpretation. In turn, this has increased the objectivity of archaeological research and enhanced its value for understanding the entire span of human history and the human condition in general.

    • An updated version of the definitive history of archaeology
    • Brings in new perspectives and areas of study
    • Places development of archaeological theory in broad social and intellectual framework
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    Reviews & endorsements

    From the previous edition: 'This is a work which all thinking archaeologists will wish to have on their shelves.' Colin Renfrew, Nature

    ' … a substantial update …' Journal of Medieval Archaeology

    '… remains the very best macro-history available.' Cambridge Archaeological Journal

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    Product details

    • Edition: 2nd Edition
    • Date Published: November 2006
    • format: Paperback
    • isbn: 9780521600491
    • length: 726 pages
    • dimensions: 229 x 153 x 39 mm
    • weight: 0.972kg
    • availability: Available
  • Table of Contents

    Preface to the second edition
    1. Studying the history of archaeology
    2. Classical and other text-based archaeologies
    3. Antiquarianism without texts
    4. The beginnings of prehistoric archaeology
    5. Evolutionary archaeology
    6. Culture-historical archaeology
    7. Early functional-processual archaeology
    8. Processualism and postprocessualism
    9. Pragmatic synthesis
    10. The relevance of archaeology
    Bibliographical essay.

  • Instructors have used or reviewed this title for the following courses

    • Adv. Archaeological Anthropology
    • Advanced Archaeological Methods
    • Archaeological Theory
    • Archaeological Theory and Practice
    • Archaeology Core seminar
    • Comparative Studies in Cultures and Transformation
    • Contemporary Issues in Archaeology
    • Core Seminar in Archaeology
    • Development of Anthropological Theory
    • Foundations of Archaeology
    • History of Archaeological Method and Theory
    • History of Archaeological Theory
    • History of Archaeological Thought
    • Introduction to Archeology
    • Problems in Archaeology
    • Seminar in Anthropological Method and Theory
  • Author

    Bruce G. Trigger, McGill University, Montréal
    Bruce G. Trigger is James McGill Professor in the Department of Anthropology at McGill University. He received his PhD from Yale University and has carried out archaeological research in Egypt and the Sudan. His interests include the comparative study of early civilizations, the history of archaeology, and archaeological and anthropological theory. He has received various scholarly awards, including the prestigious Prix Léon Gérin from the Quebec government, for his sustained contributions to the social sciences. He is an honorary fellow of the Society of Antiquaries of Scotland and an honorary member of the Prehistoric Society (UK). His numerous books include the first edition of A History of Archaeological Thought (Cambridge 1989), The Cambridge History of the Native Peoples of the Americas, Volume 1 (Cambridge 1996), co-edited with Wilcomb E. Washburn, and Understanding Early Civilizations (Cambridge 2003).

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