Surveying New Sites: Landscapes and Archaeologies of the Internet
- Publisher: Equinox
A revolution has occurred within the practice and dissemination of archaeology over the past three decades. The advent of widespread computational applications, the development of digital technology and the growth of the internet as a public and institutional research tool have ensured that archaeologists have reshaped the approach to their discipline whilst ‘archaeology’ has become far more accessible to wider society. This revolution has been accompanied by an inevitable period of self—reflection for archaeologists as they seek to define themselves and their work within the new media that has emerged. Traditional ideas have been disrupted as new technologies enable developments in how archaeology engages with a public audience, the role of the discipline within real and ‘virtual’ environments has been questioned and the reliance on digital simulacra over artefacts have ensured that discipline appears to have entered into a ‘crisis of the real’. The search to adjust to this environment has been based upon the principle that archaeology is adjusting to a challenge of the new; how technological innovation demands that an alternative archaeology should emerge, one which is equipped both methodologically and theoretically for the way in which the discipline has been transformed. However, the focus on change has perhaps been overstated. The principles of archaeological investigation and analysis may not be dramatically altered with a ‘digital age’. Perhaps a concern for process and development will enable the continuation of the character of the discipline within this new field. How archaeology may be useful in defining this new media landscape can be more significant than how this new technology will alter archaeology. This article explores the role of archaeology in providing a mode of analysis through the use of approaches defined through critical code studies to examine the site of Stonehenge within the online landscape.
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