Approaches to the archaeology of value


The value of material goods, be it economic, social, spiritual or otherwise, is a key factor in their manufacture, acquisition, use and discard. While changeable, value mediates every phase of the object’s life cycle. It changes over time and amongst subcultures. The consideration of value is fundamental to archaeological interpretation, and yet archaeological theories of value have only recently attracted attention. This is in part a reflection of a broader reconsideration of value across the social sciences—most significantly anthropology—where the mere definition of value is the subject of engaging debate. In this paper, I present my own conceptualisation on the utility of value in the analysis and interpretation of historical archaeological assemblages.

Cite this Record

Approaches to the archaeology of value. Penny Crook. Presented at Travelling Stories: Connecting People and Landscapes, a joint conference of the Australasian Society for Historical Archaeology and Interpretation Australia, Hobart, Tasmania, Australia. 2017 ( tDAR id: 455189)

Temporal Coverage

None: 1788 to 1901

Individual & Institutional Roles

Contact(s): Penny Crook

Record Identifiers

ARC Identification Number(s): DE140101095