Ethnoarchaeology: Approaches to Fieldwork

  • Gustavo G. PolitisEmail author
Living reference work entry


Field methods of ethnoarchaeology are based on those of ethnography, but because of the type of information that is sought, there are some record types that are more specific to archaeology. In other words, fieldwork in ethnoarchaeology is also based on participant observation in living societies, with an attitude of minimal interference in the community under study and a clear research design. However, little has been written and reflected on ethnoarchaeological fieldwork (for exceptions, see David and Kramer 2001: 63–90; Arthur and Weedman 2005), and in general, it is not clearly specified in the reports. There are three defining elements of ethnoarchaeology that have implications in their field methods: the study of a living culture, with reference to the material derivatives of human behavior, and (when it is in traditional society) the postcolonial context.

Key Issues/Current Debates/Future Directions/Examples

The ethnoarchaeological fieldwork has some peculiarities....

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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2020

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.INCUAPA-Facultad de Ciencias SocialesCONICET UNICENOlavarríaArgentina

Section editors and affiliations

  • Sandra Montón-Subías
    • 1
  • Bisserka Gaydarska
    • 2
  1. 1.Departament d’HumanitatsICREA/Universitat Pompeu FabraBarcelonaSpain
  2. 2.Department of ArchaeologyDurham UniversityDurhamUK