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Why should archaeologists work with craftspersons?

Konferensbidrag (offentliggjort, men ej förlagsutgivet)
Författare Camilla Groth
Harald Collin Bentz Høgseth
Karl-Magnus Melin
Fredrik Leijonhufvud
Publicerad i 25th annual meeting of the European Association of Archaeologists; Beyond paradigms, Bern September 5-7, 2019
Publiceringsår 2019
Publicerad vid Institutionen för kulturvård
Språk en
Länkar https://www.e-a-a.org/eaa2019
Ämnesord Interdisciplinary research, craftsmanship, embodied cognition, experiential knowledge, haptic experiences
Ämneskategorier Historia och arkeologi, Annan humaniora


Interdisciplinary research is promoted as a way forward in coping with the growing complexity of research environments. In the context of archaeology, the knowhow of crafts persons has a great potential in aiding in the reconstruction of past events as well as in the understanding of the many background factors that shaped those events. While crafts persons have traditionally been occupied with their own craft rather than pursuing academic careers, the situation is now changing as education in the arts and crafts have moved into the academic institutions. The growing number of crafts persons with an academic interest and skills make these practitioners ample T-shaped collaborators especially in the field of archaeology and conservation. In this presentation we will discuss three cases of collaborative practices between archaeologists/conservators and craftspeople and point to the new breed of practitioner-researchers who incorporate both of these practices in their academic profiles. Drawing on embodied cognition theory and auto-ethnographical reflections, we will dive deep into the crafts persons experiential and embodied knowing and point to the importance of the sensory spectrum in this context. Also, aspects of empathy and affect emerge in this process. Through this analysis we will present the possible benefits and challenges that interdisciplinary teams can expect when inviting crafts people into their research teams.

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