Craft Specialization and Social Evolution
In Memory of V. Gordon Childe
Bernard Wailes, Editor
256 pages | 35 illus.
Cloth 1996 | ISBN 978-0-924171-43-7 | $49.95s | £32.50 | Add to cart
Distributed for the University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology
V. Gordon Childe was the first scholar to attempt a broad and sustained socioeconomic analysis of the archaeology of the ancient world in terms that, today, could be called explanatory. To most, he was remembered only as a diligent synthesizer whose whole interpretation collapsed when its chronology was demolished. There was little recognition of his insistence that the emergence of craft specialists, and their very variable roles in the relations of production, were crucial to an understanding of social evolution. The interrelationship between sociopolitical complexity and craft production is a critical one, so critical that one might ask, just how complex would any society have become without craft specialization.
This volume derives from the papers presented at a symposium at the American Anthropological Association meetings on the centenary of Childe's birth.