Historical Archaeology

, Volume 50, Issue 3, pp 50–61 | Cite as

Fifty Years On: History’s Handmaiden? A Plea for Capital H History

  • Lynette Russell


This article considers the discipline of historical archaeology as it reaches its 50-year milestone. A call to integrate history and archaeology more closely and, in particular, to think about methods for exploring interdisciplinarity is proposed. Through the conceptual frameworks of hybridity and bricolage a material approach is discussed and suggestions offered for ways to integrate history and archaeology, and consider “Capital H History.” With an Australian settler/colonial focus, the article ponders the relationships, similarities, and schisms between historical archaeology and indigenous or community archaeology through a discussion of early European contact sites, artifacts, and conceptual categories. It is argued that the study of the past emerges from the intersection between words and things. Here, in the realm of the tangible and intangible, where images, artifacts, and ephemera all provide evidence of the past—a synthesized history is possible.


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Copyright information

© Society for Historical Archaeology 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • Lynette Russell
    • 1
  1. 1.Monash Indigenous CentreMonash UniversityClaytonAustralia

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