culture history

Show Summary Details

Quick Reference


An approach to archaeological data that orders structures and artefacts into a basic sequence of events in time and space, usually as a generalized description of human achievement under broad period‐based headings. Widely regarded as a rather traditional approach to archaeological investigation, the culture history view has been criticized by processual archaeologists and post‐processual archaeologists for the fact that explanations in terms of migration or invasion are not explanations or understandings at all but merely descriptions of events. Nonetheless, the development of a robust culture history remains the object of some archaeological work, especially the geographical and chronological mapping of cultures and cultural influences.

Subjects: Archaeology.

Reference entries

Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content. Please, subscribe or login to access all content.