TEST Assignment #1: the state of Roman Archaeology

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TEST Assignment #1: the state of Roman Archaeology

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Academic articles define academic disciplines, their past, present, and future. Although books offer more room for sustained and complex engagement with an argument, articles spread more widely and appear more rapidly than books. Thus, while books provide the most fully articulated ideas about the present state of a discipline and the arguments of its past, articles are more often a bellweather for its future. For Roman archaeology specifically, the Journal of Roman Archaeology is the best source of such information and its articles from nearly the last three decades will form the content for this assignment.

For Assignment #1, we will mine the Journal of Roman Archaeology‘s listing of articles to build a database that will help us see where Roman Archaeology has been and where its going. Give yourself a few hours to complete these tasks and then come to class prepared to discuss the work in this assignment.

Here’s what we’ll do:

Part I: Collecting the articles:

Go to the DuBois library, find your assigned volume (from 2010 it will be in fascicule #1) in the list at the bottom of this page, and then enter information about the article – author(s), title, and page numbers – into this form for the first 20 articles and archaeological notes. You may find it easier to copy and paste these details from the JRA’s Annual Issues page in the “Table of contents for JRA vol. XX”. The rest of the information you’ll need, however, WILL NOT BE ONLINE.

As you enter the data, keep an eye out for patterns. What words do you see most often? Is there a subject, time period, culture, methodology, or a class of artifact that gets the most attention? In this form and in Part II you will be asked to give your opinion on this question.
Part II: Forming opinions:

Using the printed volume in the library, skim each article: read the introduction, conclusion, image captions, section headings, etc. and peruse the text as necessary to get a sense of what the article is about.
Next, choose at least one image from each article that best illustrates what the article is about. Make a digital copy of each image – scan, cellphone picture, etc. and insert into our shared Google Document. If the article or note has no images, simply state “No Image” in bold above
Below each image, write a very brief summary of each article (about three to six sentences).
Peruse the images and text of your classmates to see what they are finding.
Be prepared to discuss these image and summaries in class.
As questions and problems are addressed, I will post those questions (as permitted by the asker) and my answers in the comments below for the benefit of all.

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