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  • pg 1
									    The Good, the Bad,
     and the Bearded
Popular Images of archaeologists
   and how we see ourselves

                     Larry J. Zimmerman
                   Indiana University-Purdue
                     University Indianapolis
On Being an Archaeologist

    It takes very special qualities
         to devote one's life to
     problems with no attainable
        solutions and to poking
        around in dead people's
          garbage: Words like
       'masochistic', 'nosy,' and
     'completely batty' spring to
    Paul Bahn. 1989. Bluff Your Way in Archaeology.
            Ravette Books, West Sussex.
Some thoughts about

            …and a variety of opinions.
 Archaeologists have the most
mind-numbing job on the planet.
                    Bill Watterson, 1988

          Archaeology is one of
         most exciting things you
          can do outside of bed!
                           Just about every
                       archaeologist you talk to

            It seems as if everyone either
           wants to be an archaeologist or
                      hates us!
I believe in looking reality straight
in the eye and denying it.
                       Garrison Keillor

               Just what are the images
               of archaeologists?
How the Public sees Archaeologists

  Sketches by 12-year-old students
From kids to adults, things don’t
        seem to change

     Sketches by 20 –something
         university students
Reality leaves a lot to the imagination.

                       John Lennon
How the
public sees   In the Movies
Neither man nor woman can be
worth anything until they have
discovered that they are fools.
                   Lord Melbourne
Archaeology ain’t just for Indy anymore
Reality is what
won't go away
when you stop
believing in it.

      Phillip K Dick
How we’d like to see ourselves

                 Yes, this is a
                 painting a real
                 archaeologist had
                 done of himself!
        The reality (men)

      Yes, these are real
archaeologists, albeit Europeans
 Larry Z’s archaeologist self-image

Paul Walker, a
buff young
archaeologist in
(November 2003)
How we’d like to see ourselves
The reality
Sometimes, archaeologists are
       just cartoons
…or caricatures
You idiots! No, we don’t do dinosaurs!
An image is not simply a
trademark, a design, a slogan
or an easily remembered
picture. It is a studiously
crafted personality profile of
an individual, institution,
corporation, product or
                Daniel J. Boorstin
  Notice anything similar about
 these famous archaeologists?


         A.V.        Sir M. W. F. Petrie
What’s this thing with beards?

At the age of sixteen I went to
evening classes in the local
museum at Nuneaton…. Firstly I
was struck by the number of
beards in the audience.
David Miles, Chief Archaeologist
at English Heritage
You think it’s a joke?
           Yes, these are all real
       Anybody can be an archaeologist,
           no training necessary!

                            Scientology founder and
                            science fiction writer L. Ron
                            Hubbard on an expedition in
                            the Mediterranean
Graham Hancock
       Even a high school kid thrown
              into the past…

The lucky devil…. Why don’t I
ever find anything like this?
Even Captain Jean-
Luc “Make it so!”
•near-professional pursuit of
•studied the Iconian culture since
his cadet days.
•addressed the Federation
Archeological Council as keynote
speaker on his oft-studied Tagus
III ruins in 2367
With his striking resemblance to
that Kennewick guy…
   …studied by that
   archaeologist, Jim Chatters,      …but with a
   with a profound resemblance        beard!
   to Indiana Jones…
Role-playing games too?
On the serious side…

To be bearded has another meaning…

      To take by the beard; to seize,
      pluck, or pull the beard of (a
      man), in anger or contempt. 2.
      To oppose to the gills; to set at
Some images of us aren’t so good.
But the faces of archaeology are changing,
and they might even be less bearded.

                              Yes, these are all real archaeologists!
The past is not simply the past,
but a prism through which the
    subject filters his own
     changing self-image.
              Doris Kearns Goodwin
One last bit of archaeological

                      Don’t lean on
                       the transit!

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