Between Worlds: Bridging the Divide Between Method and Theory in Understanding the Ritual Use of Caves in Later Prehistory



Caves are unique and enigmatic places, quite unlike other types of archaeological site. Sitting between worlds—between the above-ground world of the living and the underworld of gods and ancestors—they have always attracted specific kinds of activities in which the power and fabric of the spaces themselves are integral, not least in the prehistoric past. Caves therefore demand bespoke theoretical and methodological frameworks through which we might better understand their complex biographies and natural forces. In this, they provide opportunities as well as challenges: to explore new technologies and new collaborations which showcase these dynamic spaces to their full; technologies and collaborations which consider not just the static and the visual but the ever-changing and the intangible. Between Worlds is a call to arms. As a marriage of papers on dynamic theoretical frameworks and innovative digital capture technologies, it presents the latest research in cave archaeology and the ways in which multi-disciplinary perspectives are illuminating new ways of understanding these enigmatic places and the prehistoric communities that interacted with them.


Caves Prehistory Theoretical frameworks Digital capture technologies Rituals Intangible Dynamic 


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© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.School of History, Classics and ArchaeologyUniversity of EdinburghEdinburghUK
  2. 2.Centre de Recherches en Archéologie et Patrimoine, Université Libre de Bruxelles (ULB)BruxellesBelgium
  3. 3.Department of ArchaeologyFaculty of Arts, University of LjubljanaLjubljanaSlovenia
  4. 4.Centre for Preventive Archaeology, Institute for the Protection of Cultural Heritage of SloveniaLjubljanaSlovenia

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