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Chapter Ten Explanation in Archaeology.docx

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Classical Studies
CLST 129

Chapter Ten: Explanation in Archaeology April-23-13 11:17 AM Strategies of Explanations  Migrationist and diffusionist: explanations rely on rather simple ideas of the supposed migrations of peoples or the often ill defined spread of ideas  Processual: attempts to provide more general explanations (using for instance, evolutionary theory), sometimes using law-like formulations, and (more successfully) framing hypotheses and testing deductions from these against the data  Postprocessual or Interpretive: emphasizes the specific context, drawing sometime on structrualist or neo-marxist ideas, stressing often the role ("agency") of the individual and avoiding the generalizations of the processual approach Cognitive archaeology  Cognitive archaeology is the study of the ways of though and structures of belief of past societies on the basis of their material remains. It: o Attempts to use the more rigours and explicit methods of the proicessual approach o Shows willingness to address the symbolizing and reasoning abilities of hominies before the emergence of homo sapiens, sometimes within
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