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Experimental Archaeology within the Heritage Industry: Publicity and the Public at West Stow Anglo-Saxon Village

TitleExperimental Archaeology within the Heritage Industry: Publicity and the Public at West Stow Anglo-Saxon Village
Publication TypeBook Chapter
Year of Publication2008
AuthorsCROTHERS, M E.
EditorCUNNINGHAM, P., J. HEEB, and R. P. PAARDEKOOPER
Book TitleExperiencing Archaeology By Experiment
CityOxford
PublisherOxbow Books
Pages37-46
Publication LanguageEnglish
ISBN Number978-1-84217-342-8
Abstract

At West Stow Anglo-Saxon Village the traditional view of Experimental Archaeology that was established in the 1960s has since been expanded in order to achieve firm grounding within the heritage industry. Experimental archaeology does not need to remain behind academic doors but should be made visible to the wider world. A certain amount of scientifi c compromise has been made in order to attract a wide audience, and to provide cognitive access to the concept of experimental reconstruction. The value of providing this access is immense as it generates further justification for doing experiments, and at West Stow, provides another medium for helping audiences to understand archaeology as a whole. This paper seeks to explore the methods used to communicate experimental archaeology to the public, which takes place in many forms. Outreach projects, activity days and various events have all proved to be successful in helping diff erent audiences understand experimental archaeology, using a strong support network of skilled crafts people and volunteers, without whom, none of the above would have been possible.

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