Review of Laura McAtackney and Krysta Ryzewski (eds) Contemporary Archaeology and the City: Creativity, ruination and political action

Ursula Frederick

    Research output: Contribution to journalLiterature review

    Abstract

    It has been more than 15 years since Victor Buchli and Gavin Lucas published Archaeologies of the Contemporary Past (2001), a seminal volume that took up where the Archae-ologies of Us (Gould and Schiffer 1981) left off, ostensibly kick-starting a field of research concerned with the archaeological study of the recent or contemporary past. Since that time several texts (Frederick and Clarke 2016; Holtorf and Piccini 2009; Harrison and Schofield 2009, 2010; Graves-Brown et al. 2013) have aimed to undertake archae-ologies in and of the present (Harrison 2011). Within much of this literature there is a prevailing trend to avoid delineating or defining the boundaries of the field too strictly, whether in temporal, material, theoretical or methodological terms. Indeed, contemporary archaeology is often framed as an exploratory and nascent branch of study and its practitioners consistently emphasise the always becoming nature of archaeology in general (Witmore 2013:139). This tone of emergence and openness lends the field a genuine excitement and sense of possibility, but at times it can also reinforce a provisional quality in the writing, as though it is proposition of what might be done
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)93-94
    JournalAustralasian Historical Archaeology
    Volume36
    Publication statusPublished - 2018

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