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Archaeology in the age of the Anthropocene: A critical assessment of its scope and societal contributions
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of Arts, Department of Archaeology and Ancient History. Univ Witwatersrand, Sch Geog Archaeol & Environm Sci, ZA-2050 Johannesburg, South Africa..
2015 (English)In: Journal of field archaeology, ISSN 0093-4690, E-ISSN 2042-4582, Vol. 40, no 5, 485-498 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Recent decades have witnessed heightened public and governmental awareness of the nature and scale of environmental challenges likely to face the planet over the course of the next fifty to one hundred years. Scholars from across a broad range of disciplines have been drawn into these debates and have begun to reorient their research towards finding solutions to some of the most pressing problems and to devising more sustainable and resilient livelihoods. Archaeologists, with their conventional orientation toward past events and processes have been rather slower to engage with these issues. Recently, however, there has been a steady shift within the discipline so as to incorporate more future-oriented perspectives, and 'the use of the past to plan for a better future' is rapidly becoming a common theme within archaeological research projects and publications. While welcoming some of these developments, this paper offers a critical assessment of the various claims that are now being made of archaeology's potential to help overcome current environmental challenges and its contributions to defining and understanding 'the Anthropocene.'

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2015. Vol. 40, no 5, 485-498 p.
Keyword [en]
Anthropocene, climate change archaeology, East Africa, historical ecology
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URN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-267324DOI: 10.1179/2042458215Y.0000000022ISI: 000363465000002OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-267324DiVA: diva2:873663
Available from: 2015-11-24 Created: 2015-11-20 Last updated: 2015-12-22Bibliographically approved

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Lane, Paul J.
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