Anthropology | Intro to Archaeology
P200 | 6016 | 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 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 how we
study 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, lab assignments, and a
short project. Students in the honors section read some extra and more
challenging materials, and will have a more in-depth final project.