Evolution by Natural Selection
•1859 - English naturalist Charles Darwin publishes On the Origin of Species
outlining the theory of evolution by natural selection.
•French antiquarian Boucher de Perthes records archaeological evidence of
the existence of prehistoric Europeans through stone tools from gravel
deposits along the Somme River, France.
•1859 - British archaeologists John Evans and Joseph Prestwich
authenticate Boucher de Perthes’ discoveries with the publication of a
scientiﬁc paper to the Proceedings of the Royal Society.
Late 19th century Archaeology: Contrasting views of “change”
•From the mid 19th century until the early 20th century, European archaeology
concentrated heavily on the description, classiﬁcation, and deﬁning of
successive “archaeological cultures”.
•Under this approach, Culture = bounded, discrete grouping of people
recognizable from its material culture.
•Approach inﬂuenced by perceptions of unique ethnicities and rising
nationalism in Europe
•Under - emphasizes the concept of “change” within society
North American Archaeology
•Unlike Europe, North American Archaeology developed a much closer link
with Cultural Anthropology
•Contact with living native communities led to a search for explanations of
culture change rather than simply describe cultures.