Assembling the Past: Studies in the Professionalization of by Alice Beck Kehoe, Mary Beth Emmerichs

By Alice Beck Kehoe, Mary Beth Emmerichs

Those twelve essays concentrate on the fight to professionalize Americanist archaeology within the 19th and 20th centuries. managed through antiquarian and aristocratic creditors within the mid-nineteenth century, the sphere handed into the arms of execs working towards a full-fledged archaeological technological know-how by means of the early 20th century. The authors deal either with mainstreams in archaeological idea, professionalization, and technological know-how and with the connection of archaeology to American society and tradition. in the course of the developmental struggles, strong males and associations marginalized ladies, ethnic minorities, the reduce and center periods, and practitioners with the inaccurate pedigree, and blocked study agendas that diverged from the norm. as well as Kehoe, participants comprise Elin D. Danien, Donald McVicker, Neil Asher Silberman, Lawrence G. Desmond, William G. Dever, Stephen L. Dyson, James W. Halporn, Mary Ann Levine, Susan J. Bender, Don D. Fowler, and Jonathon E. Reyman.

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Doctorates were demanded Page 20 as credentials. The underbelly of professionalization is the exclusion of the uncredentialed, superficially a wise protection especially in a destructive endeavor such as archaeology. It also served to exclude women, non-Protestants, non-whites, and people from working class origins. Sam Lothrop could afford to complete years of advanced study and then pay his own expenses to gain a foothold in his chosen profession. Few were born so fortunate. By the turn of the century, Joseph Henry's ideal of democratic American science had been repudiated, the division between professional and amateur established, and "the archaeologist" defined as Doctor.

Archaeology supposedly reveals segments of the past-in-itself through tangible objects-hard bits of incontrovertible reality. Archaeology is legitimated as a science; it glows in the prestige of methodological rigor dealing with objective data. This is presumed to be especially true for prehistoryBiblical and Classical archaeology, after all, began with documents and therefore were initially prone to the bias contained in those documents. Alas, it appears that nineteenth-century prehistoric archaeology also began with documentsEnlightenment conjectural universal histories, and flourished precisely because it seemed to give witness to the bourgeois tenet of progress embodied in technology (Kehoe 1992).

Statistics in Britain, 18651930. Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press. Malinowski, Bronislaw 1954[1926]. "Myth in Primitive Psychology," 93148. In Magic, Science and Religion. Reprint, Garden City: Doubleday. Mathien, Frances Joan. 1992. " In Rediscovering Our Past: Essays on the History of American Archaeology, edited by Jonathan E. Reyman, 103130. Aldershot: Avebury. McVicker, Donald E. 1992. " In Rediscovering Our Past: Essays on the History of American Archaeology, edited by Jonathan E. Reyman, 145159.

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