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Getting focussed – 3 busy months ahead

In three months, near enough, I’ll have come to the end of YEAR 2 of my PhD. By that point I aim to have completed my data collection and analysis and given myself a good foundation to start writing in earnest (and hopefully a bit of wriggle room for some extra fieldwork, as I always want to do more!).

So it’s all about focus. Here’s an interesting bookmark that came up just now, as I was trying to get back into another website (thanks, Firefox).

https://thinkaheadsheffield.wordpress.com/2015/10/19/overcoming-digital-distractions-and-why-multi-tasking-is-for-losers/

I don’t know if I can ever fully give up multi-tasking but I need to limit it to particular tasks. I’ve noticed since I started doing more work online (e.g. in Google Docs) it’s a lot easier to go down the internet rabbit-hole, and I miss the flow I’d get from working in a word processor with no tempting tabs in the corner of my vision.

Anyway, that’s enough distraction! Back to my word document now… 🙂

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Re-inspired! #CHAT2016 and #MCA2016

So I got back from the CHAT 2016 conference in Orkney last night (a nice LONG drive back down to Yorkshire!) and realised it’s been a couple of months since I updated this blog regularly.

I wish there was some way I could do a PhD by portfolio – a portfolio of conference papers and practical reports, as they’re the way I seem to think the best. It’s really helpful for me to render ideas down into 15-20 minute presentations and then thoughtful questions from other conference attendees help to put things in a new light for me.

I’ve had 2 great conferences in as many weeks and they’ve inspired me to get more active on this blog again as a way of Thinking Out Loud.

(we’ll see how well this fits in with the rest of PhD life…)

Watch this space for conference reviews and research updates as I work through the ongoing synthesis and analysis of my fieldwork data and try to get the rest of my archival and interview data collection done by February!

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Writer, academic…

Functional categories #picoftheday

The week thus far has been spent collating my fieldwork results and testing the categories I developed in my first fieldwork session back in Spring. The material culture in and of the stone tents contrasts interestingly with that in the active training contexts of the live firing area.

I am trying to use a grounded theory approach to conceptualise the development of my functional categories – this approach is used much more in sociology and social sciences but has an application here as my categories are developing from qualitative data such as conditions reports and my own observations.

At the moment however it is mostly about writing lists. Many, many lists of cross-referenced categories, comparing like with like and different with different, to see which categories and properties emerge.

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Fieldwork recap 9… #FindOfTheDay #archaeology #fieldwork

WARNING: I did my fieldwork on the OTA with the permission of Range Control, during the lambing break. The lambing break is now over and live firing has resumed. Do Not attempt to visit areas within the live firing area of the OTA. For information on how to safely visit the OTA and the byelaws you must follow, please start here.

Different types of para flares – canisters and spent flares and their chutes. Present in all survey areas. Small scale 20cm, large scale 50cm.

(c) Krissy Moore 2016 All Rights Reserved

I’m currently tracking down correct identification details for each of the artefacts I’m sharing as part of the Find Of The Day series, which will become part of my GIS database. For now I’m just sharing these pictures without further commentary, as a taste of the material culture of military training that I’ve encountered during my walkover survey.

Fieldwork recap 8… #FindOfTheDay #archaeology #fieldwork

WARNING: I did my fieldwork on the OTA with the permission of Range Control, during the lambing break. The lambing break is now over and live firing has resumed. Do Not attempt to visit areas within the live firing area of the OTA. For information on how to safely visit the OTA and the byelaws you must follow, please start here.

(c) Krissy Moore 2016 All Rights Reserved

“Archaeological area” signage and evidence of small arms round impact near Bushman’s Road

I’m currently tracking down correct identification details for each of the artefacts I’m sharing as part of the Find Of The Day series, which will become part of my GIS database. For now I’m just sharing these pictures without further commentary, as a taste of the material culture of military training that I’ve encountered during my walkover survey.

“The Archaeology of No Theory”…

Many moons ago (in 2004), I spent a year in Japan and wrote a Japanese-language research paper on the presentation of archaeology in Japanese media and pop culture.

I was reminded of this the other day, when I borrowed Cornelius Holtorf‘s book Archaeology is a Brand, and found my name in the acknowledgements (!!). I had corresponded with him during my research year, as I’d come across his work on archaeology in the media, but I had no idea I’d made it into print.

This nice little surprise somehow reminded me of this article, the Archaeology of No Theory by Leo Aoi Hosoya. Memories of it had been bubbling to the surface anyway as part of (re-)thinking over my literature review – it seems archaeological resource management here shares at least some of the same pressures mentioned by Hosoya in the mid 1990s- pressures of time, funding, management responsibilities, a common ‘rescue excavation’ context, and sometimes not-so-explicit decisions on what to record and what not to. The recent news coverage of possible implications for archaeology and the HS2 and house building projects also brought it to mind.

These decades in Japan, the word ‘excavation’ is almost a synonym of a rescue excavation, as more than enough mentioned in Japanese archaeologists’ conference papers or articles. According to Akira Teshigawara’s “Proceedings of Japanese Archaeology” (1995; p.229), because of the rapid increase of constructions for the economic growth of Japan, the number of rescue excavations increased as remarkably as from 3400 to 8500 for 10 years between 1980 and 1990.

In this situation, research or academic excavations had to be very un-welcomed, because they are supposed to be not in urgent and not worth to spend time, money or people. As the result, not only the number of academic excavations never increases, but also most of archaeologists need to get a job in administrative bodies rather than academic institutions. …

In this background, namely most of excavations are administrative ones and most of archaeologists are administrative ones, the main direction of Japanese archaeology cannot help following administrative policy of the Cultural Property Protection rather than academic criteria.

In my stint as a commercial digger I definitely felt I was at the trowel end of an archaeology of no theory (not to say that the units I worked with weren’t meeting regional research goals with their fieldwork research designs, but rather than as a subcontrator I was not exposed to this part of the process, which was quite frustrating sometimes). I love finding works which draw on the ‘grey’ literature of archaeological resource management to inspire, test, challenge and develop theoretical approaches to the past and as part of this have really enjoyed Craig Cessford’s presentations at CHAT2015 and PMAC2016.

PS The link to Figure 1 in the English language version of Hosoya’s article seems to be broken – here it is from the Japanese  version.

hosoya1j

This is a variant on the “3 blind men investigating an elephant” story…

The banner reads: “Japanese Archaeology. Who am I?”

The annoyed man with the Japanese flag is saying something like “This is why they don’t understand anything!” or “they don’t know anything!”

From left to right, the three people are saying “It’s definitely a rhinoceros”, “This is a hippopotamus!”, and “a cow….?”

 

Fieldwork recap 4… #FindOfTheDay #archaeology #fieldwork #flashback

WARNING: I did my fieldwork on the OTA with the permission of Range Control, during the lambing break. The lambing break is now over and live firing has resumed. Do Not attempt to visit areas within the live firing area of the OTA. For information on how to safely visit the OTA and the byelaws you must follow, please start here.

This artefact type was present in all of my case study locations. The solid charge section in the centre of the cylinder is quite resistant to crumpling, as can be seen in these photos.

I’m currently tracking down correct identification details for each of the artefacts I’m sharing as part of the Find Of The Day series, which will become part of my GIS database. For now I’m just sharing these pictures without further commentary, as a taste of the material culture of military training that I’ve encountered during my walkover survey.

Fieldwork recap 3: #FindOfTheDay #Fieldwork #Archaeology #flashback

WARNING: I did my fieldwork on the OTA with the permission of Range Control, during the lambing break. The lambing break is now over and live firing has resumed. Do Not attempt to visit areas within the live firing area of the OTA. For information on how to safely visit the OTA and the byelaws you must follow, please start here.

IMG_9883

Rusted shell. Scale 20cm.

I’m currently tracking down correct identification details for each of the artefacts I’m sharing as part of the Find Of The Day series, which will become part of my GIS database. For now I’m just sharing these pictures without further commentary, as a taste of the material culture of military training that I’ve encountered during my walkover survey.

Fieldwork recap 2 #fieldwork #findoftheday #flashback

WARNING: I did my fieldwork on the OTA with the permission of Range Control, during the lambing break. The lambing break is now over and live firing has resumed. Do Not attempt to visit areas within the live firing area of the OTA. For information on how to safely visit the OTA and the byelaws you must follow, please start here.

IMG_9832An anti-tank device found in the target railway – this was an extremely common artefact type found at varying levels of completeness. This is one of the more intact examples I photographed. Scale is 20cm. EDIT: It’s a recoiless 84mm Carl Gustav prac anti tank round. (Thanks to Andy Holcombe @WW2Ordnance)

I’m currently tracking down correct identification details for each of the artefacts I’m sharing as part of the Find Of The Day series, which will become part of my GIS database. For now I’m just sharing these pictures without further commentary, as a taste of the material culture of military training that I’ve encountered during my walkover survey.

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