Posted by: Johan Normark | April 27, 2010

Relabelling myself again

It may not be obvious to readers of this blog, but ”my” kind of archaeology began as a reaction against microarchaeology (my former thesis advisor Per Cornell and colleague Fredrik Fahlander’s approach). I opposed their ideas of practices being like threads in a space-time continuum. Hence the temporality of practices and objects became important to me. I ended up with what I called Polyagentive archaeology in my licentiate thesis and dissertation thesis. Polyagency is not synonymous with material agency but they come close enough. Per and Fredrik called my approach “nanoarchaeology” as I tried to pin down even smaller units of analysis than they had focused on. I was also inspired by Alfred Gell’s work Art and Agency and some Latourian ideas at this point. This was during my licentiate period when I also focused on Bachelard’s discontinuous duration.

However, after being confronted with Bergson’s ideas on duration I changed my mind and I began to focus on processes rather than objects. I was no longer a nanoarchaeologist. This is the path I am still following. Deleuze entered the stage quite late in my writings but the influence from him made me later change the label to Posthumanocentric archaeology (not Posthuman archaeology). The humans were no longer in the center of these processes. As this path takes me further away from traditional “postmodern” ideas I have also decided to drop the prefix post in “my” archaeology. Apart from Deleuze, Manuel DeLanda has had some major influence. He sees himself as a neorealist and neomaterialist philosopher. This strain of process based, morphogenetic and anti-essentialist materialism is what inspires me at the moment. There is therefore no need to cling to my old terms. This blog is therefore dedicated to Neomaterialistic Archaeology.

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