Archaeology at Binghamton University
The Archaeology Program at Binghamton University is distinguished by its emphases on critically engaged archaeology and science-based research. Our research and teaching are informed by practice theory, political economy, theories of the subject, feminism, critiques of ideology, phenomenology, historical ecology, cultural resource and heritage management, evolutionary theory, and archaeometry. Our professional practice ranges from collaborative and critically reflexive approaches to research with connections to multiple publics to cutting-edge field and laboratory investigations in the archaeological record. Faculty members acknowledge political, economic, ethical and scientific elements of all archaeological practice. We are actively involved in consultations and collaborations with indigenous and descendent communities (Native Americans, African Americans and others); in research on museum and media presentation of archaeology; in collecting and cultural understandings of objects; in explaining the archaeological record, investigating the history of human evolution, and in the establishment of participatory community archaeology programs. The Binghamton program's dual emphasis on responsibilities to the living and well-grounded, theoretically informed studies of the past places particular weight on dynamic relationship between past and present.
Our Archaeology Program enjoys a strong national and international reputation, thanks to the active research and public outreach of our faculty and students. The program is particularly well known for its engagement with cutting-edge theory in archaeology and anthropology, and for its attention to linking theoretical perspectives to archaeological practice. The success of these endeavors is documented in the excellent faculty and graduate student record of external research funding, strong publication record and high levels of interest in our program on the part of prospective graduate students both nationally and internationally.
Our goal is to prepare students to be ethical researchers, innovative scholars and successful practitioners of professional archaeology in a variety of career contexts ranging from the academy to cultural resource management. The achievement of this goal is demonstrated in the success of our graduates, many of whom have pursued careers in academic and applied professions.
For more information on our Program see Graduate Degree Guidelines for Archaeology.
Archaeology Faculty and Research
Binghamton's Archaeology faculty are active researchers within North America (especially in the Northeast, Southeast, and Southwest), South America (Bolivia, Peru, and Ecuador), Polynesia (Easter Island, Hawaii), Mexico, and Europe (France). Graduate students work across the range of geographical, topical, and theoretical foci of the faculty, and often join their field projects.
Topically, our faculty study states and empires, households and communities, ideology and religion, and the use of landscape, artifact variability, settlement patterns, and environmental data in prehistoric and historical contexts. A focus on colonial encounters connects to broader departmental interests in globalization, while concerns with practice and materiality underscore the central role of material objects in cultural process. Faculty also explore the ways in which artifacts reflect the evolution of technology, human communities, patterns of interaction, and behavior across space and through time. Faculty members have methodological expertise in geochronology, evolutionary research, geophysics, remote sensing, the responses to environmental change as well as the analysisthe analysis of lithics, pottery, historical materials, landscapes, and architecture.
Cross-cutting our specific research foci are these themes:
- Agent-based Modeling
- Ancient DNA and Archaeogenetics
- Archaeology and Communities
- Archaeology and the Creation of Subjects
- Archaeology, Media and Representation
- Artifact analyses (lithics and ceramics)
- Cultural Resource Management and International Heritage Studies
- Cultural Transmission Processes
- Evolution of Complex Societies
- Evolution of Technology
- Evolutionary Studies
- Feminism, Gender and the Body
- Historical Ecology
- Human evolution and the Paleolithic
- Human Population History
- Ideologies in Archaeology
- Landscape, Memory and the Built Environment
- Osteology and Forensics
- Political Economy
- Prehistoric Health
- Quantitative Methods
- Remote Sensing, Geophysics and Geospatial Analyses