Journal of Contemporary Archaeology, Vol 6, No 1 (2019)

Futurity, Time, and Archaeology

Matthew C. Reilly
Issued Date: 26 Jun 2019


There continues to be much archaeological discussion concerning temporality and the complex relationship between the past and present, but less attention is paid to how the future figures into archaeological thought, method, and interpretation. This introductory essay provides the theoretical framework for an archaeological consideration of futurity, an approach that takes seriously the expectations and imaginations of people in the past while also recognizing the urgency of our present here-and-now. An archaeology of critical futurities opens the discipline to potentialities of action, to imagine worlds otherwise in the past and to strive for change in the future. By broadening archaeological approaches to time to include futures, authors in this collection demonstrate the global potential for an archaeology poised for action in addition to exploring how the future is a critical component of understanding the past and present.

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DOI: 10.1558/jca.36830


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