The practice of archaeology in China today

by John W. Olsen
Antiquity ()
  • ISSN: 0003598X


In the new opening-up of China to the outside world that has taken place in the last decade archaeology and history has a major role. A walk on the Great Wall seems obligatory visiting monarchs and presidents, while the jade princesses have themselves come to Europe. The excavation of the 'terracotta army' exemplifies the scale of active archaeological research, and its exposure to public view. But why is there such concern for the past, and its artefacts, in China today?

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