1st Edition

Cultural Identity and Archaeology The Construction of European Communities

Edited By P. Graves-Brown, Sian Jones, C.S. Gamble Copyright 1996
    304 Pages
    by Routledge

    304 Pages
    by Routledge

    Cultural identity is a key area of debate in contemporary Europe. Despite widespread use of the past in the construction of ethnic, national and European identity, theories of cultural identity have been neglected in archaeology. Focusing on the interrelationships between concepts of cultural identity today and the interpretation of past cultural groups, Cultural Identity and Archaeology offers proactive archaeological perspectives in the debate surrounding European identities.

    This fascinating and thought-provoking book covers three key areas. It considers how material remains are used in the interpretation of cultural identities, for example ‘pan-Celtic culture’ and ‘Bronze Age Europe’. Finally, it looks at archaeological evidence for the construction of cultural identities in the European past.

    The authors are critical of monolithic constructions of Europe, and also of the ethnic and national groups within it. in place of such exclusive cultural, political and territorial entities the book argues for a consideration of the diverse, hybrid and multiple nature of European cultural identities.

    1: Introduction; 2: The genealogy of material culture and cultural identity; 3: Constructing identities through culture; 4: Discourses of identity in the interpretation of the past; 5: All things bright and beautiful?; 6: Imagining the new Europe; 7: One Europe – one past?; 8: Prehistory and the identity of Europe or, don't let's be beastly to the Hungarians; 9: European origins – ‘civilisation' and ‘barbarism'; 10: Farmers our ancestors and the identity of Europe; 11: Celts and politics; 12: Celts and Iberians; 13: The identity of France; 14: Narratives of Veøy; 15: Archaeological sources as ethnical evidence; 16: ‘Celtic' Iron Age Europe; 17: Britain after Rome


    Paul Graves-Brown is a Research Fellow in the Department of Psychology, University of Southampton. He researches in interdisciplinary areas, particularly human origins and the relationships between material culture and mental processes.

    Siân Jones is a Postdoctoral Fellow in the Department of Archaeology, University of Southampton and has written and researched on ethnicity and archaeology.

    Clive Gamble is Professor of Archaeology at the University of Southampton and has published extensively on the Palaeolithic.