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Material culture: the concrete dimension of social relations

Keywords: Material culture , Archaeology , Archaeological theory

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Abstract:

By investigating the emergence, maintenance and transformation of sociocultural systems, Archaeology basically works with three closely inter-related dimensions: space, time, and form. The latter has seen the greatest diversity in approaches over the course of Archaeology's construction as a discipline. This article presents the conceptions of material culture developed by various schools of archaeological thought. Wrongly understood until the 1980s as an unproblematic dimension, a passive reflection of human behavior, some authors since then have explored its active and transformative role in social negotiations, making it the concrete dimension of relations inside the society.

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