The archaeology of place

  • Binford L
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Abstract

It is suggested that if archaeologists are to be successful in understanding the organization of past cultural systems they must understand the organizational relationships among places which were differentially used during the operation of past systems. This point is illustrated by observations made among the Nunamiut Eskimo. Against this background it is demonstrated that the two most common forms of archaeological systematics, "assemblage"- versus "type"-based systematics, are not appropriate for the study of places. In the latter case, it is not possible to analyze places as such, while one cannot see places with different "content" as part of a single system in the former. It is concluded that current archaeological systematics are totally inappropriate for studying past systems of adaptation and their evolutionary modification. © 1982.

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Authors

  • Lewis R. Binford

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