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Ban Chiang, Northeast Thailand, Volume 2A
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Ban Chiang, Northeast Thailand, Volume 2A
Background to the Study of the Metal Remains

Edited by Joyce C. White and Elizabeth G. Hamilton

296 pages | 8 1/2 x 11 | 27 illus.
Cloth 2018 | ISBN 9781931707213 | $59.95s | Outside the Americas £48.00
Ebook editions are available from selected online vendors
Distributed for the University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology

"[T]his work should be required reading for students of archaeometallurgy generally. It is exceptionally well written and accessible to those new to the field, as evidenced by the lengthy and useful glossary. The chapters on geomorphology and the required steps of metalworking, dating, metallurgical analysis, technical analysis, and regional analysis strike this nonspecialist reader as exemplary and well worthy of study. This work should prove of great value for instruction."—Advances in Archaeomaterials

"The volumes are necessary reading by anyone with an interest in Southeast Asian metallurgy...[T]he volumes provide not only a detailed report of an important set of data from one of Southeast Asia's most significant sites, but also a synthetic review of what is known about prehistoric metalworking and use in the region."—Journal of Southeast Asian Studies

The emergence and adoption of metallurgy is one of the seminal topics of investigation in the history of archaeology, particularly in the history of archaeological research in Southeast Asia. The site of Ban Chiang, Thailand, is a central site in debates surrounding the chronology and significance of early metallurgy in the region. This book is the first in a series of four volumes that review the contributions of Ban Chiang and three related sites in northeast Thailand excavated by the Penn Museum to an understanding early metallurgy in Thailand.

As the study of archaeometallurgy is a complex topic that draws on numerous technical and social science disciplines, this introductory volume presents in several chapters the background needed to assess the metal and related evidence presented in the subsequent volumes in this series. A history of perspectives on the role of metals in ancient societies generally and Southeast Asia, specifically, is provided. Other chapters debunk the conventional paradigm for understanding metals and society and provide current theoretical perspectives and new paradigms for the study of ancient metals. The geological basis for the presence and location of metal ore resources in the region is reviewed. The final chapter presents a technical overview of ways material properties of ancient metals may be studied. While providing a background to the study of metals at Ban Chiang, the volume also reviews, synthesizes, and repositions the method and theory for the study of archaeometallurgy generally.

Thai Archaeology Monograph Series, 2A; University Museum Monograph, 149

Joyce C. White is the Executive Director of the Institute for Southeast Asian Archaeology.

Elizabeth G. Hamilton is the archaeometallurgist and data manager for the Institute for Southeast Asian Archaeology.

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