Worlding Excavation Practices

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This paper seeks to do justice to the often complex, messy, and sometimes ambiguous meaning making practices of archaeological field work. Taking recent adoptions of assemblage theory and sensory studies in archaeology as an angle of arrival, I contribute here to discussions on self-reflective and interpretive archaeology. Drawing on empirical encounters with troweling and backfilling at the Ardnamurchan Transitions Project in western Scotland, I describe the production of archaeological knowledge in terms of storying: The coming into existence of an earthly archaeological world through sensory correspondences. I show how storying generates meaning and knowledge through correspondences of more proximate with more distant excavation practices and interplays between them. Furthermore, I propose that through storying, archaeological meaning making as well as knowledge production can be understood as worlding: The generation of sustained remembrances of earthly events with lively corresponding materials.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)889–903
Number of pages15
JournalOpen Archaeology
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2021

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2021 Kevin Pijpers, published by De Gruyter.

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