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The Languages of Archaeology: Dialogue, Narrative, and Writing

The Languages of Archaeology: Dialogue, Narrative, and Writing

Rosemary Joyce

ISBN: 978-0-470-69352-0 April 2008 Wiley-Blackwell 184 Pages


This volume provides the first critical examination of the relationship between archaeology and language, analysing the rhetorical practices through which archaeologists create representations of the past.

1 Introducing the First Voice: Rosemary Joyce.

2 Writing the Field of Archaeology: Rosemary Joyce and Robert W. Preucel.

3 Dialogues Heard and Unheard, Seen and Unseen: Rosemary Joyce.

4 A Second Voice: Crafting Cosmos: Jeanne Lopiparo.

5 Voices Carry Outside the Discipline: Rosemary Joyce, Carolyn Guyer, and Michael Joyce.

6 The Return of the First Voice: Rosemary Joyce.

7 Final Dialogues: Rosemary Joyce.


  • Draws on literary theory to discuss the ways in which archaeologists have used language to reinforce their views of the past.

  • Presents ideas about how language might be used to present a more satisfactory understanding of time and place in the archaeological record.

  • Discusses the recent explosion of experimentation with new forms of writing within archaeology.

  • Uses a selection of different kinds of archaeological texts to demonstrate how the creation of narrative binds together field archaeology with formal and informal presentations of interpretations.