Archaeologies of Text: Archaeology, Technology, and Ethics

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Scholars working in a number of disciplines - archaeologists, classicists, epigraphers, papyrologists, Assyriologists, Egyptologists, Mayanists, philologists, and ancient historians of all stripes - routinely engage with ancient textual sources that are either material remains from the archaeological record or historical products of other connections between the ancient world and our own. Examining the archaeology-text nexus from multiple perspectives, contributors to this volume discuss current theoretical and practical problems that have grown out of their work at the boundary of the division between archaeology and the study of early inscriptions. In 12 representative case-studies drawn from research in Asia, Africa, the Mediterranean, and Mesoamerica, scholars use various lenses to critically examine the interface between archaeology and the study of ancient texts, rethink the fragmentation of their various specialized disciplines, and illustrate the best in current approaches to contextual analysis. The collection of essays also highlights recent trends in the development of documentation and dissemination technologies, engages with the ethical and intellectual quandaries presented by ancient inscriptions that lack archaeological context, and sets out to find profitable future directions for interdisciplinary research.