Evans, J.G. 2003. Environmental archaeology and the social order. – London/New York, Routledge Book review by C.C. Bakels
‘Environmental archaeology and the social order’ by John G. Evans is a surprising book. Its aims and contents are announced in the first sentence of the preface: “This book shows how environmental archaeology can be studied from the point of view of human social relationships”. This point of view is displayed in ten chapters, followed by a chapter 'conclusions'. Every chapter ends, too, with conclusions, presented as short statements. This was a happy notion, because each chapter displays so many ideas and case-studies that the average reader can easily lose the thread of the story. It is a book to be studied carefully.
The first chapter deals with the history of environmental archaeology. The author remarks that archaeology has gone 'social' in the past twenty-five years. Archaeology has also started to socialize the landscape. Environmental archaeology creates data in order to reconstruct past environments, but environments were (and are) used only after they had/have been established in the social domain. Read more...