Foucault himself tells us that after his early experience of a Stalinist communist party, he felt sick of politics, and shied away from political involvements for a long time. Still, in his first book, which appeared inless than two years after Foucault had left the Party, his theoretical perspective remained Marxist. This book was a history of psychology, published in English as Mental Illness and Psychology.
Art work by Banksy title unknown. In the beginning was the word For centuries, we have been telling ourselves a simple story about the origins of social inequality. For most of their history, humans lived in tiny egalitarian bands of hunter-gatherers.
Then came farming, which brought with it private property, and then the rise of cities which meant the emergence of civilization properly speaking. Civilization meant many bad things wars, taxes, bureaucracy, patriarchy, slavery… but also made possible written literature, science, philosophy, and most other great human achievements.
Almost everyone knows this story in its broadest outlines. Since at least the days of Jean-Jacques Rousseau, it has framed what we think the overall shape and direction of human history to be.
This is important because the narrative also defines our sense of political possibility. Most see civilization, hence inequality, as a tragic necessity.
But no one challenges the basic structure of the story. There is a fundamental problem with this narrative. Overwhelming evidence from archaeology, anthropology, and kindred disciplines is beginning to give us a fairly clear idea of what the last 40, years of human history really looked like, and in almost no way does it resemble the conventional narrative.
Our species did not, in fact, spend most of its history in tiny bands; agriculture did not mark an irreversible threshold in social evolution; the first cities were often robustly egalitarian. Simply framing the question this way means making a series of assumptions, that 1.
Pointing this out is seen as a challenge to global power structures, but compare this to the way similar issues might have been discussed a generation earlier. The latter, we are supposed to believe, is just the inevitable effect of inequality, and inequality, the inevitable result of living in any large, complex, urban, technologically sophisticated society.
That is the real political message conveyed by endless invocations of an imaginary age of innocence, before the invention of inequality: Otherwise, the best we can hope for is to adjust the size of the boot that will be stomping on our faces, forever, or perhaps to wrangle a bit more wiggle room in which some of us can at least temporarily duck out of its way.
Mainstream social science now seems mobilized to reinforce this sense of hopelessness. First, we will spend a bit of time picking through what passes for informed opinion on such matters, to reveal how the game is played, how even the most apparently sophisticated contemporary scholars end up reproducing conventional wisdom as it stood in France or Scotland in, say, Then we will attempt to lay down the initial foundations of an entirely different narrative.
This is mostly ground-clearing work. The questions we are dealing with are so enormous, and the issues so important, that it will take years of research and debate to even begin understanding the full implications. But on one thing we insist.
Contemporary authors on the origins of social inequality; or, the eternal return of Jean-Jacques Rousseau Let us begin by outlining received wisdom on the overall course of human history.
It goes something a little like this: As the curtain goes up on human history — say, roughly two hundred thousand years ago, with the appearance of anatomically modern Homo sapiens — we find our species living in small and mobile bands ranging from twenty to forty individuals.
They seek out optimal hunting and foraging territories, following herds, gathering nuts and berries. If resources become scarce, or social tensions arise, they respond by moving on, and going someplace else.A survey commissioned by the Met concluded that “Treasures of Tutankhamun” had pumped $ million into the New York City economy, taking into account money spent by Tut-goers on hotels.
Papers Recent talks CV Research statement Teaching statement News Network Archaeology via Epidemic Processes: The Case of Growing Trees accepted to the Allerton Conference on Communication, Control Lyon, France. (11/8/) -- Gave an invited talk in the Purdue University Statistics Department probability seminar.
(11/3/ Svend Hansen, German Archaeological Institute, Eurasien-Abteilung Department, Department Member.
Studies Eurasian Prehistory, Neolithic & Chalcolithic Archaeology, and Bronze Age Europe (Archaeology). Skip to main content Bronze Age warfare, Caucasian Archaeology, Prehistoric Warfare, Neolithic France, History of Archaeology, Archaeology.
In France, Lavendhomme at Inrap has discussed various possible new kinds of uses of archaeology in the planning process, and similar discussions start to appear in other countries. In the UK, archaeologists are increasingly involved in mitigating heritage impacts of building projects at the design stage rather than during construction (excavating).
FASCINATED TED TALKS INTERESTING VIDEOS Sticker. $ Warning! Angry Saber-toothed cat! Sticker. $ National Museum of Archaeology France Sticker. $ Archaeologists Don't Dig Dinosaurs Sticker. $ archaeological research Sticker.
Mask of Tutankhamun Sticker. $ The Hat Sticker. $ CMYK Stegosaurus Sticker. $ HUMAN. Paul Blinkhorn studies Anglo-Saxon pottery, Pottery (Archaeology), and Post medieval pottery.