It’s 5:30am. You stumble out of bed, almost trip over your work boots in the dark and stagger to the bathroom. The ‘clean’ t-shirt you slip on was washed by hand and your work trousers have a few mysterious marks on them you hope no one will notice. Before leaving for a day of fieldwork,… Continue reading The embodied experience of the archaeologist
Henry VIII. Augustus. Napoléon Bonaparte. What do these three individuals have in common? They are synonymous with certain periods of history in Western Europe. They are also all white male rulers. Such historical figures are frequently used as touchstones when attempting to construct an impression of the past, and there are several good reasons for… Continue reading World-building in archaeology: from the ‘Yard’ or the ‘Heavens’
Image: 'Sun through kelp' by Benjamin Hollis (CC BY 2.0) Last Saturday, I was lucky enough to visit the British Museum’s latest blockbuster exhibition: Sunken Cities: Egypt’s Lost Worlds. A tale of two cities, it explores the underwater discovery of Thonis-Heracleion and Canopus, likely to have been founded in the 7th century BC but then… Continue reading Sunken Cities: the submerged review
Image: Maze #3 by Robson# (CC BY 2.0) Whether you’re writing high fantasy or hard science fiction, you’d better be sure you have the kinks of your world ironed out (or alternatively, emphasised to their full lurid potential), otherwise the reader will soon cease to suspend their disbelief. It’s no good having your protagonist discover… Continue reading Worldbuilding in archaeology
We’re trapped. All the doors are locked, and the only way out is to explore the room and solve the chain of riddles hidden within so we have a chance of working out the combination for the locked door. After fifteen minutes of co-operative play, we’ve pieced together the four-digit code and the door to… Continue reading Escape Games: Life imitating Art?
Who would write a love letter to archaeology? I’m sure it’s been done before. If not a love letter, then surely a drunken text, followed by a long Facebook message the next day full of regret? Or perhaps a cheery email sent by an enthusiastic site assistant at 8am? Maybe not, but if archaeology was… Continue reading The Archaeology of Love Part I: The Heart of the Matter
This post has been written as a response to 'The Grand Challenges for Archaeology: A Blogging Carnival.' I’m walking down a street in Covent Garden. It’s the height of summer, the pavements are encrusted with over-heated tourists and well-dressed business people nipping out for an over-priced salad. Street performers vie for the attention of bemused… Continue reading Commercial archaeology: hi vis but no visibility in the big city?