Books  Physical Sciences  Physical Sciences: General 

Practical and Theoretical Geoarchaeology

By: Richard Macphail, Wendy Matthews and Paul Goldberg

448 pages, 250 illus


Paperback | Dec 2005 | #153453 | ISBN: 0632060441
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NHBS Price: £47.50 $58/€53 approx

About this book

Practical and Theoretical Geoarchaeology provides an invaluable overview of geoarchaeology and how it can be used effectively in the study of archaeological sites and contexts. Taking a pragmatic and functional approach, this book presents a fundamental, broad-based perspective of the essentials of modern geoarchaeology in order to demonstrate the breadth of the approaches and the depth of the problems that it can tackle. This book reflects the rapid advances made in the discipline in recent years, but also gives the reader a firm grasp of conventional approaches. It covers traditional topics with the emphasis on landscapes, as well as anthropogenic site formation processes and their investigation. It also provides guidelines for the presentation of field and laboratory methods and the reporting of geoarchaeological results. Practical and Theoretical Geoarchaeology is essential reading for archaeology undergraduate and graduate students, practicing archaeologists and geoscientists who need to understand and apply geoarchaeological methodologies.

There is a new exceptionally good geoarchaeology text - it is written for you. It tells you what a soil is, what a sediment is, is easy to read well illustrated and designed for the field archaeologist and not just the environmental and soil scientist. It gives practical information and general information (and includes lab methods etc) and in my opinion it is the best textbook on the subject going and is suitable for all archaeologists. Dr Michael J Allen, Environmental Manager, Wessex Archaeology and Reviews Editor, The Prehistoric Society "The authors of this book do a fantastic job explaining complex ideas, frequently using key sites to show how geoarchaeology was critical in understanding the full story of a site's archaeology.", June 2006 "Practical and Theoretical Geoarchaeology gives a thorough introduction to the discipline, allowing the reader to gain a broad understanding of its possible applications ... A good basis for undergraduate and masters students approaching geoarchaelology." Archaeological Review from Cambridge


PrefaceAcknowledgmentsIntroductionPart I Traditional Geoarchaeology1. Sediments2. Stratigraphy3. Soils4. Hydrological Systems I: Slopes and Slope Deposits5. Hydrological Systems II: rivers, Lakes, and Wetland6. Aeolian settings and Geoarchaeological Environments7. Coasts8. Caves and RocksheltersPart II Nontraditional Geoarchaeological Approaches9. Human Impact on Landscape: Forest Clearance, Soil Modifications, and Cultivation10. Occupation Deposits I: Concepts and Aspects of Cultural Deposits11. Occupation Deposits II: Examples from the Near East, North America, and Europe12. Experimental Archaeology13. Human Materials14. Applications of Geoarchaeology to Forensic SciencePart III Field and Laboratory Methods, Data, and Reporting15. Field-based Methods16. Laboratory Techniques17. Reporting and Publishing18. Concluding Remarks and the Geoarchaeological FutureAppendicesReferencesIndex

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Paul Goldberg is a geologist and Professor in the Department of Archaeology, Boston University. He has carried out geoarchaeological research ranging from Quaternary landscapes and associated archaeological sites in the Near East, California, and Texas, to cave sediments in China, South Africa, Europe, and the USA. Richard I. Macphail is a Senior Research Fellow atUniversity College London, investigating archaeological sediments, soils, and occupation deposits across Europe and the USA. He was a researcher for English Heritage for 20 years, and is currently a Research Fellow at Boston University and was professor invite at Universite de Tours.

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