By Paul Bahn, Bill Tidy
The publication that every one archaeology buffs have secretly been longing for! This precise mixture of textual content, anecdote and sketch finds, and revels in, thse elements of the prior which were neglected, glossed over or perhaps suppressed - the bawdy, the scatological and the downright strange. Our ancestors weren't constantly critical, downtrodden and worried creatures. They have been human like ourselves and shared our earthy feel of humour that's according to physically services, bawdiness and slapstick. So it's time to take the fig leaf off the prior and feature a protracted, not easy examine the genuine prior - the realm that will have had the Victorians attaining for his or her smelling salts. So to be able to understand what your standard Egyptian slave considered pharoah, or a Roman legionary considered his commander, you can find the reply in Disgraceful Archaeology - in hilarious picture element!
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Additional resources for Disgraceful Archaeology: Or Things You Shouldn't Know About the History of Mankind
It will not, however, be the William and Mary house which led the Trust to acquire it for the nation in the first place; though it will be a magnificent monument to late twentieth-century skill and heritage reconstruction. Uppark makes a most interesting case. For a century now, reconstruction has been eschewed by the official state agencies in Britain in their dealings with monuments on land. As a result we now have many splendid ruins—as Uppark could alternatively have been— visually impressive as they stand but often difficult to comprehend in their three-dimensional jumble of different building phases and changing uses.
This is very easy to do, especially if one is not consciously writing history in the sense of working towards some understanding of the original evidence but using ‘history’ towards some other end. In this case, the aim is a personalised account of ‘the perfect weekend retreat…above all, unforgettable’. Let’s remember the address and forget the history; perhaps the dubiousness of the latter, in some sort of ‘real’ sense, does not matter all that much. As an academic, however, I would argue that it does matter.
It is probably kinder to regard such goings-on as illustrative of the stimulus of the past rather than decry them as the prostitution of history itself. The only danger is that participants and watchers dupe themselves into thinking that what they are doing is history. All this activity, far from illuminating the past, is actually saying something profound and poignant about the present. A radio programme featuring the participants at ‘Tudor’ Kentwell (BBC Radio 4, 29 December) illustrated pathos and the very necessary therapy behind the fun and pretence.