© 2011

The Archaeology of Maritime Landscapes

  • Ben Ford

Part of the When the Land Meets the Sea book series (ACUA, volume 2)

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-xv
  2. Ben Ford
    Pages 1-9
  3. William W. Fitzhugh, Anja Herzog, Sophia Perdikaris, Brenna McLeod
    Pages 99-128
  4. Matthew E. Keith, Amanda M. Evans
    Pages 179-194
  5. Jeffrey B. Glover, Dominique Rissolo, Jennifer P. Mathews
    Pages 195-216
  6. Christer Westerdahl
    Pages 291-310
  7. Christer Westerdahl
    Pages 331-344

About this book


Maritime cultural landscapes are collections of submerged archaeological sites, or combinations of terrestrial and submerged sites that reflect the relationship between humans and the water.  These landscapes can range in size from a single beach to an entire coastline and can include areas of terrestrial sites now inundated as well as underwater sites that are now desiccated. 

However, what binds all of these sites together is the premise that each aspect of the landscape –cultural, political, environmental, technological, and physical – is interrelated and can not be understood without reference to the others. In this maritime cultural landscape approach, individual sites are treated as features within the larger landscape and the interpretation of single sites add to a larger analysis of a region or culture. This approach provides physical and theoretical links between terrestrial and underwater archaeology as well as prehistoric and historic archaeology; consequently, providing a framework for integrating such diverse topics as trade, resource procurement, habitation, industrial production, and warfare into a holistic study of the past.

Landscape studies foster broader perspectives and approaches, extending the study of maritime cultures beyond the shoreline. Despite this potential, the archaeological study of maritime landscapes is a relatively untried approach with many questions regarding the methods and perspectives needed to effectively analyze these landscapes. 

The chapters in this volume, which include contributions from the United States, the United Kingdom, Norway, and Australia, address many of the theoretical and methodological questions surrounding maritime cultural landscapes. The authors comprise established scholars as well as archaeologists at the beginning of their careers, providing a healthy balance of experience and innovation. The chapters also demonstrate parity between method and theory, where the varying interpretations of culture and space are given equal weight with the challenges of investigating both wet and dry sites across large areas.


Archaeological Method and Theory CRM and nautical archaeology Cultural Resource Management Maritime Cultural Landcapes Mesolithic underwater archaeology Neolithic material culture Underwater Archaeology archaeology of historic ships coastal landscape archaeology wet sites and archaeology

Editors and affiliations

  • Ben Ford
    • 1
  1. 1.Dept. AnthropologyIndiana University of PennsylvaniaIndianaUSA

About the editors

Dr. Ben Ford is an Assistant Professor of Anthropology at Indiana University of Pennsylvania. His research interests include historical and maritime archaeology, and historic preservation, as well as the uses and perceptions of space and environment during the past.

Bibliographic information

  • Book Title The Archaeology of Maritime Landscapes
  • Editors Ben Ford
  • Series Title When the Land Meets the Sea
  • DOI
  • Copyright Information Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2011
  • Publisher Name Springer, New York, NY
  • eBook Packages Humanities, Social Sciences and Law Social Sciences (R0)
  • Hardcover ISBN 978-1-4419-8209-4
  • Softcover ISBN 978-1-4614-2888-6
  • eBook ISBN 978-1-4419-8210-0
  • Series ISSN 1869-6783
  • Series E-ISSN 1869-6791
  • Edition Number 1
  • Number of Pages XV, 352
  • Number of Illustrations 80 b/w illustrations, 0 illustrations in colour
  • Topics Archaeology
    Cultural Heritage
  • Buy this book on publisher's site