The Swiss Family Robinson and the archaeology of colonisations


Australian historical archaeology is now at a stage of development where it is essential that we pause and ask ourselves: 'What are we doing and why are we doing it?' In this paper Judy Birmingham of the Department of Archaeology, University of Sydney, and Denis Jeans of the Department of Geography, University of Sydney, strongly advocate an explicit problem-oriented approach to our subject matter rather than merely descriptive data collection. Clearly, Australian historical archaeology offers substantial opportunities to explain the process of colonisation, not only in the context of 19th century Australia but in a wider context also. The writers point to The Swiss Family Robinson by J. D. Wyss, first published in 1812-13, as an interesting paradigm account of that process of colonisation. They discuss the application to Australia of the colonisation model thus derived and conclude that problem-orientation around a model of this sort is one of our first priorities.

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The Swiss Family Robinson and the archaeology of colonisations. Judy M Birmingham, Denis Jeans. Australian Journal of Historical Archaeology. 1: 3-14. 1983 ( tDAR id: 407473) ; doi:10.6067/XCV80V8GQD



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Contact(s): Australasian Society for Historical Archaeology (ASHA)

Record Identifiers

TDAR ID(s): 7235


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