Excavating the Extra-Ordinary 2 – challenges & merits of working with small finds

International Workshop, 25/26 Nov 2022, JGU Mainz, Alte Mensa

Every archaeological undertaking uncovers small finds, be it tools, vessels, figurines, jewelry, or models. Time and again these finds are so common and “ordinary" that their potential for deeper insight is grossly underestimated. Often these finds are fragmentary, found in disturbed contexts or occur in such rough quantities that their recovery and analysis is a Herculean effort. In many cases, only a small selection of such finds is adequately presented in final publications.

Two years ago, “Excavating the Extra-Ordinary” provided a first platform for excavators, museum staff and personnel from universities and institutions on all career levels to exchange ideas about methods, modi operandi and best practices, focusing on dealing with largely disturbed contexts, the management of huge amounts of finds, the identification of specific items among mixed groups and coping with inconclusive results. This first fruitful conference has shown that there is a great demand for this type of exchange.

Excavating the Extra-Ordinary 2 aims to continue and broaden the discussion of challenges and merits of working with small finds. Again, we wish to bring together scholars from all areas of object centered work and material culture. Since archaeological work and the exchange on methodological questions always benefits from interdisciplinary input, we are pleased to be able to expand the research area to include Egyptological expertise as well as experts from Near Eastern Archaeology. Zum Programm.

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