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Contact

Jacqueline Matthews


Start date

Feb 2014

Submission date

Dec 2016

Links

Jacqueline Matthews

Jacqueline Matthews profile photo

Thesis

Enmeshed with stone: Implications of relational ontology for the archaeology of Australian stone artefacts

Summary

In Australian archaeological research on stone artefacts, there is a disconnect between scientific approaches, social explanations, and Indigenous knowledge and perspectives. Throughout this thesis, my goal was to formulate and examine the implications of an alternative, theoretical approach in response to this research problem. My research engaged substantially with relational ontology, as well theories of learning and material culture, and was situated within social and Indigenous archaeologies. Overall, I argue that a relational orientation establishes new possibilities for interpretation and understanding, which are relevant and meaningful in the research context of stone artefact studies in Australian archaeology.

Why my research is important

Stone artefacts are a key source of information that archaeologists use to understand the past. In this research project, I considered some fundamental issues related to how stone artefacts are interpreted in Australian archaeological research. In response to these issues, I developed a new theoretical orientation, which I demonstrated could open up new avenues for future research with the goal of continuing to create better accounts of the past.

Funding

  • My research was supported by an Australian Postgraduate Award.