Michels joseph dating techniques in archaeology
In the second section, I furnish a more technical and detailed appraisal of the each of the twelve chapters with comments about those major publications previously regarded by archaeologists as key sources on these specific topics.
The types of materials or contexts that are dated, potential sources of error or contamination, and results are also considered.We could debate the issue whether archaeology is a social science or is a humanities' discipline that employs paradigms, field and laboratory methods, and analytical techniques derived from the natural and physical sciences to verify artifact origins, discern cultural chronology, and interpret or infer human behaviors.Nonetheless, chronology--the science of measuring time in fixed periods and of dating events and epochs and arranging them in their order of occurrence (e.g., the sequential ordering of events or the tabulations derived from this activity)--is a fundamental component of scientific and humanistic inquiry.This is both a compelling and an essential reference for those scholars who wish to understand current procedures and problems, and future prospects in science-based archaeological chronology. The volumes in this series are published in cooperation with the Society for Archaeological Sciences (SAS), an organization of natural scientists and professional archaeologists. Taylor is the author of numerous scientific papers and monographs, including (1987) and was coeditor with A. Holding a doctoral degree in nuclear physics, his principle areas of research were in magnetic prospection, archaeomagnetism, and luminescence dating.Chronometric Dating in Archaeology is the second volume in a new series initiated by Plenum Press entitled "Advances in Archaeological and Museum Science," and takes its place beside the initial volume in the series, , edited by George Rapp, Jr. The society's members come from diverse disciplines but share the common belief that natural science techniques and methods constitute an essential component of both archaeological field and laboratory studies. In 1983 he was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society of London. Taylor's name has become synonymous with the evolution and refinement of methods in radiocarbon dating, while Aitkin is celebrated as one of the leading international authorities on luminescence techniques and the chronologies of ancient climates.Sample preparations, the advantages and disadvantages of particular methods, and error rates are among the topics reviewed.
The individual chapter "conclusions" summarize the presentations, relate current uses and trends, and often suggest future research directions or needs.
In essence, the reader is exposed to a history of the refinement of a scientific procedure.
All of the chapters present several examples or practical applications that demonstrate the utility of the technique.
Basic textbooks on archaeological method and theory relate that there are two methods of establishing chronology: 1) methods of relative dating (ascertaining the correct order of the events) and 2) absolute or chronometric dating (quantifying the measurement of time in terms of years or other fixed units).
Relative dating may be derived from sequence dating through seriation (changes in artifact form, function, or style through time), by stratigraphic analysis (geological stratigraphy based upon the "Law of Superposition"), and by cross dating.
This is because I am reviewing the volume, in the main, for scholars in the humanities disciplines rather than for scientists; therefore I shall attempt to interest and inform both audiences.