Edited by two pioneers in the field of sensory archaeology, this Handbook comprises a key point of reference for the ever-expanding field of sensory archaeology: one that surpasses previous books in this field, both in scope and critical intent.

This Handbook provides an extensive set of specially commissioned chapters, each of which summarizes and critically reflects on progress made in this dynamic field during the early years of the twenty-first century. The authors identify and discuss the key current concepts and debates of sensory archaeology, providing overviews and commentaries on its methods and its place in interdisciplinary sensual culture studies. Through a set of thematic studies, they explore diverse sensorial practices, contexts and materials, and offer a selection of archaeological case-studies from different parts of the world. In the light of this, the research methods now being brought into the service of sensory archaeology are re-examined.

Of interest to scholars, students and others with an interest in archaeology around the world, this book will be invaluable to archaeologists and is also of relevance to scholars working in disciplines contributing to sensory studies: aesthetics, anthropology, architecture, art history, communication studies, history (including history of science), geography, literary and cultural studies, material culture studies, museology, philosophy, psychology, and sociology.

chapter 1|17 pages

Sensory archaeology

Key concepts and debates

part I|1 pages

Approaches to sensory archaeology

chapter 2|14 pages

Digging up the sensorium

On the sensory revolution in archaeology

chapter 3|12 pages

Early theories of sense perception

Greek origins

chapter 4|28 pages

Doing sensory archaeology

The challenges

chapter 5|18 pages

How does it feel? Phenomenology, excavation and sensory experience

Notes for a new ethnographic field practice

chapter 6|13 pages

The senses in museums

Knowledge production, democratization and indigenization

part II|1 pages

Sensorial practices, contexts and materials

chapter 8|19 pages

Movement, materials, and intersubjectivity

Insights from Western Ireland

chapter 10|15 pages

Environment and the senses

chapter 11|14 pages

Waterfalls and moving waters

The unnatural natural and flows of cosmic forces

chapter 12|17 pages

Darkness and light in the archaeological past

Sensory perspectives

chapter 16|15 pages

Cities and urbanism

chapter 17|12 pages

Warfare and the senses

Archaeologies of the senses and sensorial archaeologies of recent conflict

part III|1 pages

Archaeological case-studies by period and region

chapter 19|21 pages

Stealing through the back door

Sensory archaeology in the European Mesolithic

chapter 21|19 pages

Sensory Mediterranean prehistory

chapter 23|17 pages

The sensory world of Mesopotamia

chapter 27|12 pages

Haptic vision

Making surface sense of Islamic material culture

chapter 28|19 pages

Sensorial experiences in Mesoamerica

Existing scholarship and possibilities

chapter 31|17 pages

Sensory archaeology in the Pacific