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ANTH317 Historical Archaeology

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Archaeological analysis of the emergence of a globalised modern world since ca. 1500 AD, with consideration of issues including colonialism, culture contact, missionisation, diaspora, ethnicity, class, gender and indigeneity.

This introduction to the field of Historical Archaeology explains how archaeology contributes to our knowledge of the recent past and the emergence of modern society. We focus particularly on colonial encounters in New Zealand and the Pacific, Australia, and North America, with case studies exploring interactions between indigenous peoples and European settlers, and the gradual emergence of new cultural identities. As well as lectures and guided reading on the subject, practical classes introduce students to the analysis of historical artefacts. Historical archaeology is one of the major areas of employment for archaeology graduates in New Zealand.

Paper title Historical Archaeology
Paper code ANTH317
Subject Anthropology
EFTS 0.1500
Points 18 points
Teaching period Semester 2 (On campus)
Domestic Tuition Fees (NZD) $1,110.75
International Tuition Fees Tuition Fees for international students are elsewhere on this website.

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18 200-level ANTH points or 108 points
ARCH 202, ANTH 216
Schedule C
Arts and Music
May not be credited together with ARCH210 passed in 2013.

Suitable for students in any subject.


Teaching staff

Co-ordinator: Associate Professor Tim Thomas

Contributing Lecturers:

Teaching Arrangements

Taught via lectures and practicals.


Course readings are provided through eReserve on Blackboard.

Course outline

Will be available on Blackboard at the beginning of the course.

Graduate Attributes Emphasised
Global perspective, Interdisciplinary perspective, Lifelong learning, Scholarship, Communication, Critical thinking, Cultural understanding, Ethics, Self-motivation.
View more information about Otago's graduate attributes.
Learning Outcomes

The learning aims and objectives focus on self-directed, research based learning and the development of a critical approach to Historical Archaeology.

By the end of the course, students should have:

  • A deep understanding and knowledge of how historical archaeology is conducted and what it has contributed to understanding the foundations of the modern world
  • A detailed familiarity with selected practical skills in historical archaeology
  • An ability to locate and critically assess relevant literature and to write well researched and cogently argued essays

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Semester 2

Teaching method
This paper is taught On Campus
Learning management system


Stream Days Times Weeks
A1 Monday 16:00-16:50 28-34, 36-41
Wednesday 16:00-16:50 28-34, 36-41


Stream Days Times Weeks
Attend one stream from
A1 Thursday 12:00-13:50 29, 31, 33, 36, 38
A2 Thursday 12:00-13:50 30, 32, 34, 37, 39