A bold new method of theorizing about the prehistoric past


Reconstructing Prehistory

Scientific Method in Archaeology

James A. Bell

paper EAN: 978-1-56639-160-3 (ISBN: 1-56639-160-1)
$39.95, Jun 94, Available
cloth EAN: 978-1-56639-159-7 (ISBN: 1-56639-159-8)
$83.50, Jun 94, Out of Stock Unavailable
368 pp 6x9

Reevaluating the method of scientific investigation, James A. Bell provides a bold philosophical framework for developing and assessing archaeologists' theories of the past. More informed and judicious decisions, the author asserts, are made when archaeologists explore questions such as:

With numerous examples from archaeology as well as comparative examples from the physical and biological sciences, Bell illustrates how exploring the answers to these and related inquiries will lead to improved formulation and testing of theories.


Excerpt available at www.temple.edu/tempress



Part I: The Context and the Issues
1. Controversy Over Method in Theoretical Archaeology
2. Issues in Theory Building and Assessment
3. Testability

Part II: The Philosophical and Methodological Roots
4. Induction
5. The Paradigmatic View of Science
6. The Refutationist View of Science
7. The Anarchic View of Science

Part III: Individualism and Cognitive Archaeology
8. Holism, Individualism, and Empathy
9. Cognitive Archaeology



About the Author(s)

James A. Bell is Professor of Philosophy and Chair of the Philosophy Department at the University of South Florida.

Subject Categories

Philosophy and Ethics


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