A Brief History of Archaeology details early digs and covers the development of archaeology as a multidisciplinary science, the modernization of meticulous excavation methods during the twentieth century, and the important discoveries that led to new ideas about the evolution of human societies.
Spanning more than two thousand years of history, this short account of the discipline of archaeology tells of spectacular discoveries and the colorful lives of the archaeologists who made them, as well as of changing theories and current debates in the field. Early research at Stonehenge in Britain, burial mound excavations, and the exploration of Herculaneum and Pompeii culminate in the nineteenth-century debates over human antiquity and the theory of evolution. The book then moves on to the discovery of the world’s pre-industrial civilizations in Egypt, Mesopotamia, and Central America; the excavations at Troy and Mycenae; the Royal Burials at Ur, Iraq; and the dramatic finding of the pharaoh Tutankhamun in 1922. The book concludes by considering recent sensational discoveries and exploring the debates over processual and post-processual theory that have intrigued archaeologists in the early twenty-first century. The third edition updates this respected introduction to one of the science’s most fascinating disciplines.
A Brief History of Archaeology is a vivid narrative that will engage readers who are new to the discipline, drawing on the authors’ extensive experience in the field and classroom.
Table of Contents
1. “The Backward Looking Curiosity” 2. The Antiquity of Humankind 3. Pharaohs and Assyrians 4. Human Progress and the Three Ages 5. Early American Archaeology 6. Scriptures and Civilizations 7. The Birth of Culture History 8. Egypt, Iraq, and Beyond 9. Archaeology Coming of Age, 1920 to 1940 10. Culture History and Beyond 11. Radiocarbon Dating and World Prehistory 12. The “New Archaeology”? 13. After Processualism 14. The Future R>
Nadia Durrani is a Cambridge University-trained archaeologist and writer, with a Ph.D. from University College London. She is the editor and founder of Past Worlds magazine, former editor of two of Britain’s leading archaeology magazines, and author and editor of many books and articles on world archaeology.
Brian M. Fagan is one of the world’s leading archaeological writers and an internationally recognized authority on world prehistory. He is Distinguished Emeritus Professor of Anthropology at the University of California, Santa Barbara.