By Robert W. Preucel
This booklet explores the a number of ways that archaeologists provide intending to the earlier, highlighting debates over the ontological and epistemological prestige of the self-discipline and comparing present responses to those matters.
- Explains why absolute foundations in archaeology are insufficient and appears on the possible choices.
- Highlights debates over the ontological and epistemological prestige of the self-discipline and evaluates present responses to those matters.
- Defines a brand new area for archaeological discourse and dialogue.
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Extra info for Archaeological Semiotics
These limits can be thought of in terms of the contrast between lexiological and grammatical languages. Saussure writes, The two extremes are like two poles between which the whole system moves, two opposing currents which share the movement of language: the tendency to use the lexicological instrument (the unmotivated sign) and the preference given to the grammatical instrument (structural rules) (Saussure 1966:133–134). 4 The language system (after Saussure 1966:115). The second property is the linear character of the signiﬁer.
Is text best conceived as a metaphor or an analogy? Criado (1995) critiqued the text metaphor in favor of a visual one characterized by strategies to inhibit, hide, exhibit, and monumentalize. Parker Pearson (1995) discussed the durability of material culture compared to text and the risks in fetishizing material objects and inappropriately attributing meaning to them. Introduction 13 Thomas (1995) accepted the text metaphor but advocated an approach that examines how things are incorporated into personal biographies and group myths in the production of identity.
There is a growing recognition that objects are not passive reﬂections of society, rather they are active participants in social practices that constitute selves and others (Appadurai 1986b; Hoskins 1998; Myers 2001). Signiﬁcantly, postprocessual archaeology has played a key role in facilitating this reengagement. Daniel Miller, one of the leaders in the ﬁeld, was one of Hodder’s students at Cambridge. Miller, along with Tilley and Victor Buchli, teaches at the University College, London, perhaps the leading center for material culture studies today.