Anthropology | Intro to Archaeology
P200 | 5227 | Sievert


How do archaeologists learn how old something is? How do they figure
out where to dig? How do they make sense out of their discoveries?
This course will introduce you to archaeology, its goals, methods, and
findings. Archaeologists are famous for using other people's garbage
as their main source of information, so this is essentially a course
about trash. We will look at how archaeologists use explore issues of
food and eating in ancient times, trade, politics, world views, and
technology. You will learn about scientific methods that
archaeologists use, including dating, sampling, excavation strategies,
and materials science. In the process we will be discussing specific
ancient time periods like the Neolithic, cultures like the ancient
Mississippians, and phenomena such as the development of irrigation
agriculture in the Andes. You will gain an understanding of what we
think happened in the past through the lens of the things people left
behind. You will also learn how archaeologists apply their
interpretations to modern situations, and how we can best preserve the
archaeological record. S & H Distribution credit.

Format: There will be illustrated lectures, demonstrations, videos,
and hands-on lab exercises and simulations conducted in the lab
sections. Evaluation: Tests, short papers, completed assignments in
Revealing Archaeology, and a short project. Students in the honors
section read some extra and more challenging materials, and will write
site reports for their final projects. Text: Revealing Archaeology (an
interactive software package) along with e-reserve.