Philosophy and Archaeology - 1st Edition - ISBN: 9780126156508, 9781483295770

Philosophy and Archaeology

1st Edition

Authors: Merrilee H. Salmon
eBook ISBN: 9781483295770
Imprint: Academic Press
Published Date: 28th December 1982
Page Count: 203
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Description

Studies in Archaeology: Philosophy and Archaeology presents the circumstances under which archeological hypotheses can be considered confirmed or disconfirmed. This book discusses the role of analogy in archeological reasoning, particularly in ascribing functions to archeological items.

Organized into seven chapters, this book begins with an overview of the relationship between archeology and philosophy. This text then examines the importance of laws for archeology and discusses some essential features of law statements. Other chapters consider the strong claims for the hypothetico–deductive method of confirmation in various works by archeologists. This book discusses as well the different uses of analogical reasoning in archeology and provides a discussion of the structure of analogical arguments, criteria for evaluating them, and their relations to the Bayesian arguments for confirmation. The final chapter deals with several issues related to the development of a theory of archeology.

This book is a valuable resource for archeologists and philosophers.

Table of Contents


Preface


Acknowledgments


One. Introduction


Two. Laws in Archaeology


Introduction and Examples


Some Features of Laws: Generality and Truth


Determinism and Statistical Laws


Methodological Determinism


Differences Between Laws of Physics and Laws of the Biological and Behavioral Sciences


Are There Any Laws of Archaeology?


The Importance of Laws for Archaeology


Are There Any Nontrivial Laws of Archaeology?


An Attempt to Employ Laws in an Archaeological Explanation


Conclusion


Three. Confirmation in Archaeology


Introduction


The Logic of Confirmation


The Hypothetico-Deductive Method


Relative Confirmation and Absolute Confirmation


Inadequacy of the H-D Method as a Model of Confirmation in Archaeology


Prior Probabilities


An Alternative Pattern for Confirmation


Bayes' Method


Alternative Hypotheses


Conclusion


Four. Analogy and Functional Ascription


Introduction


Form and Function


Context


Analysis and Evaluation of Arguments from Analogy


An Attempt to Provide a General Method for Ascribing Functions


Criticism of the Attempt


Ethnoarchaeology and Analogy


Conclusion


Five. Functional Explanation


Introduction and Examples of Functional Explanations


Functional Explanations Versus Functionalist Theories of Anthropology


The Consistency of Functional Explanations with Scientists' Understanding of Causality


Some Connections Between Functional Explanations and Systems


Models of the Phenomena and Models, or Patterns, of Explanation


Difficulties in Fitting Functional Ex

Details

No. of pages:
203
Language:
English
Copyright:
© Academic Press 1982
Published:
Imprint:
Academic Press
eBook ISBN:
9781483295770

About the Author

Merrilee H. Salmon

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