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Guest Lecture Series 2017-2018

Our guest lecture series invites researchers working with material culture theory to speak to the group in order to promote discussion, thought and dialogue regarding how we as archaeologists think about and use material culture in our interpretations. In general, there are two invited speakers in Michaelmas, two in Lent and one in Easter. The wider archaeology and academic community are invited to these guest lectures.

30 October 2017  Inaugural Lecture in 2017-2018 Series

Professor Annelou Van Gijn (University of Leiden)

Title:  An experimental approach towards understanding the chaîne opératoire of house construction

4:30-5:30 pm.  McDonald Institute for Archaeological Investigation Seminar Room.

Wine reception to follow

Abstract:  Experimental house construction provides a practice-based approach to obtain insight into the material properties and quantities of building materials, the variety of tools involved and their efficacy for specific building tasks. The amount of labour and skills required, and the organization of the entire process through time can also be investigated by means of a quantitative experimental program. In 2012 and again in 2015/2016 we made a reconstruction of a Late Neolithic houseplan. We only used replicas of Stone Age tools, including for example stone, bone and antler axes and adzes, wooden digging sticks and bone and antler chisels.  The entire process was documented in detail  and the amount of building materials, labour input, duration of tool use and the time different stages of the building process required, were quantified. The tools were subsequently studied microscopically  for the presence of wear traces to evaluate which aspects of the building process could be traces through the tools. The fact that we were given the opportunity to repeat the experiment and construct the same house again in 2015/16 allowed us to learn from our mistakes and experiences of the first house and to make different technological choices. 

 

POSTPONED UNTIL LENT TERM : DATE TBA (27 November 2017)

Dr. Stephanie Wynne-Jones (University of York)

Title:  What can ceramics tell us about religion and authority?

4:30-5:30 pm.  McDonald Institute for Archaeological Investigation Seminar Room.

Wine reception to follow

 

12 February 2018

Dr. Paolo Fortis (Durham University)

Title:  ‘The aesthetics of “time-reckoning”: some reflections on a Guna chromatic history

4:30-5:30 pm.  McDonald Institute for Archaeological Investigation Seminar Room.

Wine reception to follow

 

26 February 2018

Dr. Bill Sillar (University College London)

Title:  TBA

4:30-5:30 pm.  McDonald Institute for Archaeological Investigation Seminar Room.

Wine reception to follow