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A Little History of Archaeology (Little Histories) Hardcover – April 10, 2018
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—David Musgrove, BBC History
“Brian Fagan provides an entertaining account of the development of archaeology across the world. . . Fagan’s recollections. . . help bring the history to life.”—Current World Archaeology
“Learned and lively.”—Wall Street Journal
“A wonderful introduction to the history of archaeology. . . . Captivating.”—Archaeology
“Anyone wishing to appreciate the pedigree of this unjustly overlooked item of furniture should dive between the covers of this volume to experience the ultimate bedtime story.”—Current World Archaeology, January 2020
“The perfect introduction to archaeology and its rich and exciting history. Brian Fagan is a renowned excavator and author of numerous best-selling books on the subject, but this is not a textbook: it reads like a thriller and is impossible to put down."—Francis Pryor, author of Britain BC: life in Britain and Ireland before the Romans
“Crisp, engaging and accessible ... In archaeology today, Brian Fagan is among the very best writers who are able to clearly and effectively communicate with the general public. This excellent book is no exception.” —Jeremy A. Sabloff, author of Archaeology Matters
‘Brain Fagan is a masterful storyteller. In this “history of,” he captures the personality of archaeology though the principal voices of those who have directed its course for well over two centuries. Marvelous.’—Vernon L. Scarborough, University of Cincinnati
"An engaging and authoritative historical tour of archaeology. As Fagan reminds us, “The past is around for us all to experience and enjoy”—and there can be no better encouragement to do this than the story told in these pages."—Chris Scarre, author of The Human Past
“A terrific and engaging read by a master at the top of his game, told with great gusto and drawn from a lifetime of travelling, digging, observing and thinking about what makes us human.”—Michael Wood, author of In Search of the Trojan War
About the Author
- Publisher : Yale University Press; Illustrated edition (April 10, 2018)
- Language : English
- Hardcover : 288 pages
- ISBN-10 : 0300224648
- ISBN-13 : 978-0300224641
- Item Weight : 1.2 pounds
- Dimensions : 8.6 x 5.7 x 1.2 inches
- Best Sellers Rank: #1,343,249 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
- Customer Reviews:
Top reviews from the United States
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The organization is not strictly linear, which means we bob around a bit. We open with the amateurs and hobbyists who dabbled in digging things up. Slowly and bit by bit we hopscotch around the world looking over the shoulders of various famous, infamous, or relatively unknown explorers, adventurers, and professionals who found the big finds and developed the science of archaeology into what it is today. All of the big names get fair attention - Carter, Schliemann, and so on. Less well known, but often more important, archaeologists have their contributions to the field noted as well. (For example, the Danish contribution in the form of the Three Ages approach, (Stone, Bronze, Iron), was an unexpected point of emphasis. And a concerted effort has been made to bring notable women into the club.)
During the course of sketching out the development of the field we hit all of the high points, (Egypt, Ur, the Mayans, Troy, Stonehenge, Pompeii), but also many often overlooked sites and discoveries, (American Mound Builders, American Pueblos, early Chinese artifact hunting).
Needless to say, none of these sites get more than passing attention, and there is probably much here that is glossed over or left out of the story. While an effort has been made to include sites from all over the world, (Great Zimbabwe), the tale is notably Eurocentric. This is popular science, and that comes with all of the usual good and bad. If the goal, though, is to offer an introduction and to excite curiosity, that mission has been accomplished. This outline, in the company of a congenial and well informed guide, struck me as a fine invitation to read further and more deeply about the field in general and about sites and discoveries of special interest.
(Please note that I received a free ecopy of this book without a review requirement, or any influence regarding review content should I choose to post a review. Apart from that I have no connection at all to either the author or the publisher of this book.)