By Fredrik Fahlander.
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Extra resources for Archaeology as Science Fiction: a Microarchaeology of the Unknown
A complementary example is provided by Randall Collins (Fig. 3). Collins recognises only three macrovariables in social studies: time, space, and number of combinations of microsituations. All other variables are characteristics of microsituations (Collins 1981:98). In Collins' scheme, macrostructural patterns are the result of microsituations, implying that structural variables be derived from social practices performed within microsituations. Micro SPACE SCALE TIME SCALE Seconds Minutes–Hours Days Weeks–months Years One Person Cognitive, (1-3 sq.
G. Helms 1988). However, if we leave the questions of ethnicity, the origin of ‘cultural traits’ and strict economic necessities behind, and instead focus on actual performance and social practices within a spatial frame, we may be able to discuss structurating principles, social organisation, institutions and social constructions within such locales. The obvious problem is to find suitable time-space references for a locale. It is certainly not sufficient to settle for contemporary political boundaries such as a county or province.
Deetz 1977; cf. Olsen 1997:211). Such empirical studies illuminate the discrepancies between what people do and what people think or want to do. In formulating a concept of social interaction within an operative scope, it seems most fruitful to delimit the area of investigation by time-space edges (Giddens 1984:xxvii, 164ff) – in other words, to analyse what has been going on within a specific locale during a chosen span of time. Naturally, all actions within a time-space 'sector' are constrained, enhanced, influenced, or biased by social and ecological effects within and outside such a locality.
Archaeology as Science Fiction: a Microarchaeology of the Unknown by Fredrik Fahlander.