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Stratum plus. 2005-2009. №4

L. S. Klejn (St.-Petersburg, Russia)

A panorama of theoretical archaeology: Russian text with addenda

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Pages: 11-116

Properly speaking, there is no need in a vast summary for an Anglophone reader, since my survey article A panorama of theoretical archaeology was in its time fully printed in English in Current Anthropology (1977) and its contintuation in Fennosacandia Archaeologica (1990). Only their Russian original is printed here, which is their first pubication in Russian.
May be, the only thing that needs to be explained is the form in which this work is prited here. It is decided not to resort to back translation but to use just the original Russian text – with some peculiarities of get-up that were changed by translation into English. In particular the numeration of chapters and sections (subchapters) was dropped – here it is restored.
Together with the text my replies to my commentators in the opened discussion are placed here. Then the “second panorama” follows – the survey article Theoretical archaeology in the making: the survey of books published in the west in 1974–1979, and again my rerplies to commentators. The whole set is preceded with a preface (a new text) in which I explain my motives – why I decided to give into the journal the Russian original of an article of 30 years ago. I also expose some circumstances of the creation of this article and recollect the reaction on it in the West because these circumsrances are unknown to modern Russian reader (or are well forgotten), and the acquaintance with them can help to perceive this text correctly.
Speaking on my motives of re-publication, I adduce my considerations about the situation in philosophy and in theory as well. In both new ideas don’t oust preseding ones but join them, coexist and with variable success compete. Outstanding thinkers of different epochs argue and support each other. Plato and Kant meet and confront like contemporary with Heidegger and Derrida. Just so in archaeology Montelius and Sophus Müller are no less alive than Binford and Hodder. My survey of theoretical battles of the most stormy period of theoretical archaeology, and restoring this survey I hope to stir up the somewhat fading away interest to theory in young archaeologists.
I also clarify for contemporary reader some Marxist declarations present in my text and being in contradiction to its main content. For Societ time such declarations were obligatory in theoretical surveys of Western literature especially outbound abroad (with greatest censure impediments). Meanwhile by the highest standards they coud hardly mislead anybody, yet formal requirements were unavoidable.
My trend to create theory of archaology was connected just with my search of possibilities to grant another base for archaeological studies, i. E. Free from Marxist ideology and objective. Later on such surveys of theoretical literature became usual in archaeology – in the form of collection volumes by Trigger and Glover, Schiffer, Ucko, Hoder et al. I am pleased to realize that my (made in Russia) contribution was first in this line.

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