Archaeologists do not discover the past but take the fragmentary remains which they recover and make something of them. Archaeology is a process of detection and supposition; this is what makes it so fascinating. However, the interpretations of archaeologists differ and change over time. They depend upon the amount of evidence available, the ideas and preconceptions of the archaeologist and their interests and aims.
Michael Shanks's enlivening work is a guide to the discipline of classical archaeology and its objects. It assesses archaeology as a means of reconstructing ancient Greek society using the latest approaches of social archaeology. In addition, The Classical Archaeology of Greece outlines the history of the discipline and discusses why Classical Greece continues to fascinate us and why it has had such an impact on European civilization and identity.
'It places Classical Archaeology firmly in a historical and theoretical frame. This is a real step forward … this is an essential book … Anyone with even a passing interest in the subject should read this book.' - Antiquity
'This is a fascinating and thought-provoking book …' - JACT Review
'Shanks shows us the perils of uncritically accepting past methods' - Greece & Rome