Lots going on this week! If you're in Grand Forks -- and have dug yourself out of the snow -- come and check out my research talk at the Lecture Bowl at the Memorial Union at the University of North Dakota today at 12 pm.
If not, here's part of my chaotic life: an abstract for next January's Archaeological Institute of America's meeting. The plan is for a panel that looks at post-Classical levels at well-know ancient sites sponsored by our Medieval and Post-Medieval Interest Group of the AIA. My paper will tweak that a bit by looking at data collected from a handful of small intensive survey projects and re-analyzing them in light of recent work on the post-Classical world and changes in the basic questions survey archaeology has proven adept at addressing.
New Views on Old Data
Reinterpreting Intensive Survey Results After 30 Years
Intensive pedestrian surveys across Greece have vastly expanded our understanding of the Greek countryside, particularly for the post-Classical period. Over the past 25 years, the publications of the so-called second-phase intensive survey projects have contributed to our understanding of a more prosperous Late Roman east and refined our view of the post-Classical settlement structures. With these successes in mind, this paper will reexamine the results from several small-scale survey projects conducted in the late 1970s and early 1980s in Boeotia and the Corinthia. Using a series of case studies, this paper argues that there is much to be gained by returning to old survey data with an eye toward addressing recent questions regarding the post-Classical landscape.
The survey projects examined in this paper coincided with many of the early second-phase survey projects, like the Cambridge Boeotia Project and the Argolid Exploration Project, but were published earlier and in a less comprehensive way. Returning to the material from these projects, in much the same way that archaeologists return to excavation material many years after its recovery and publication, both represents the coming of age of intensive survey and continues the reflexive trends in the study of survey material and data. Re-examining the data and these projects’ underlying assumptions increases the transparency of these older efforts, enriches the pool of material available for the comparative study of the Greek countryside, and contributes to the way in which current survey projects collect and organize their data.