Historically, archaeological research has itself been divided amongst different academic disciplines, with corresponding variations in intellectual traditions and approaches. It has always been the primary object of the IAW to bridge these divisions and to foster a healthy, informed dialogue on the aspects of method and theory that cut across the field’s diverse disciplinary locations. The workshop brings together faculty and students from Anthropology and Near Eastern Languages and Civilizations, forging an archaeological community that is more than the sum of its parts. In addition, the workshop has succeeded in its ambition to draw on members of other interested departments and committees such as Classics, the Ancient Mediterranean World, African, East Asian, South Asian, and Geographical Studies.
The IAW was founded, and continues to serve, as the primary point of substantive intellectual connection between archaeologists in the divisions of Humanities (particularly NELC, but also Classics and History) and Social Sciences (Anthropology). The focus in last year’s workshop on “Time and Space”’ allowed for student participants from these various constituencies to present their work as well as research plans to a community which could provide a deeply grounded and theoretically informed set of responses and feed back. We achieved our goal for connection this past year by hosting several workshops with graduate student presenters, a couple of faculty presenters, and by hosting joint workshops with the Anthropology Department at Northwestern University in October, 2011, and with the Ancient Societies Workshop in April, 2012. The proposed theme for this year, “Vision,” seeks to expand this conversation further and provide concerted grounds for the collaboration and conversations with other constituencies and interested scholars such as those in the U.S. Locations Workshop and the Material Cultures Workshop. Additionally, continued cooperation with faculty and students in departments and workshops beyond our traditional constituency is a goal for 2012-2013. In casting archaeology into discussions that move broadly across the Social Sciences and the Humanities, we hope to use next year’s theme to reaffirm the interdisciplinary perspective that lies at the heart of archaeological research.
Unless otherwise stated, the Interdisciplinary Archaeology Workshop meets
in Haskell 315, on alternate Thursdays at 4.30 pm
Persons with disability who believe they may need assistance, please contact workshop coordinators.