ARCH41330 Hunter-Gatherers 2: producing knowledge

Academic Year 2022/2023

Building on the overview of key themes in our understanding of hunter-gatherers provided in HG Archaeology 1, this module considers the contemporary contexts in which we produce knowledge about hunter-gatherers and the implications this has for our practice. Students will engage with issues around the development of ‘ethical space’ for indigenous archaeology and decolonising perspectives, as well as the varied national contexts for and public engagement with hunter-gatherer archaeology.. This includes understanding the other fields which also provide information about the hunter-gatherer past: genetics, linguistics and oral tradition. We will explore the role of narratives and other forms of representation in presenting the hunter-gatherer past and consider what it means to practice hunter-gatherer archaeology at a time of global crisis This module develops alongside the student’s engagement with the design of their research proposal and dissertation topic, and is intended to inform this process.

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Curricular information is subject to change

Learning Outcomes:

On completion of this module students will be able to demonstrate
- A critical understanding of the social context of hunter-gatherer archaeology today
- An in depth perspective on the relationship between archaeological information and other perspectives on the hunter-gatherer past
- reflection on how we present the hunter-gatherer past through narrative and other media.
- experience of designing an approach to communicating archaeological knowledge to the general public
- successfully writing a substantial ‘review’ essay in a publication format

Indicative Module Content:

Indigenous Archaeology & Decolonising Archaeology
Should we use the phrase "Prehistory"?
Ethnoarchaeology & Analogy
Oral Traditions and HG archaeology
Genetics and Linguistics
Time depth and time perspectivism
Big Pictures and Local Histories
Hunter-Gatherer Archaeology in a time of crisis

Student Effort Hours: 
Student Effort Type Hours
Specified Learning Activities


Autonomous Student Learning




Seminar (or Webinar)




Approaches to Teaching and Learning:
Module is taught through combination of short lectures and extended seminars, with discussion and task based activities providing students with opportunities to explore complex topics in depth

Final review essay in pre-determined publication format with feedback available on drafts.

Group designed output on communicating the hunter-gatherer past. Format of output to be decided by the group. 
Requirements, Exclusions and Recommendations

Not applicable to this module.

Module Requisites and Incompatibles
Not applicable to this module.
Assessment Strategy  
Description Timing Open Book Exam Component Scale Must Pass Component % of Final Grade
Group Project: The project asks students to develop a way of communicating the HG past to broader publics. The exact format is up to the group: blogs, posters, podcasts, videos. Week 8 n/a Graded No


Essay: 4000 word publication format essay. Students will be provided with guidlines from a journal and required to submit their work in this format. Formative feedback will be available on a draft. Week 12 n/a Graded No


Carry forward of passed components
Resit In Terminal Exam
Summer No
Please see Student Jargon Buster for more information about remediation types and timing. 
Feedback Strategy/Strategies

• Feedback individually to students, on an activity or draft prior to summative assessment
• Feedback individually to students, post-assessment

How will my Feedback be Delivered?

- essay: formative feedback available on draft, and discussion/review in developing topic. Verbal & written feedback on final essay - group project: verbal and written feedback: informal formative feedback available in development of project.

Name Role
Dr Jess Beck Lecturer / Co-Lecturer
Martin Moucheron Lecturer / Co-Lecturer