Mortuary practices: Their social, philosophical-religious, circumstantial, and physical determinants

Christopher Carr

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

160 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Recent, mainstream, American mortuary archaeology, in its paradigmatic outlook, middle-range theory, analytic methodology, and case studies, has emphasized social organization as the primary factor that determines mortuary practices. Broader anthropological and social science traditions have recognized philosophical-religious beliefs as additional, important determinants. The historical roots of mortuary archaeology's focus on the social, and the consequence of this on theory development, is reviewed. Then, through a Human Relations Area Files (HRAF) cross-cultural survey, the kinds of philosophical-religious, social organizational, circumstantial, and physical factors that affect specific kinds of mortuary practices, and the relative importance of these factors, are documented. The data are also used to test basic premises that mortuary archaeologists routinely use today to reconstruct social organization. A balanced, more holistic, and multidisciplinary approach, which considers many kinds of causes beyond social ones, is found necessary to interpret mortuary remains and to reconstruct the past from them.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)105-200
Number of pages96
JournalJournal of Archaeological Method and Theory
Volume2
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Jun 1995

Fingerprint

archaeology
analytic theory
determinants
organization
human relations
development theory
social science
cause
methodology
Physical
Mortuary Practices
Religion
Archaeology
Social Organization
Causes
Development Theory
Middle-range Theory
Methodology
File
Archaeologists

Keywords

  • archaeology of social organization
  • ideology
  • mortuary archaeology
  • mortuary practices

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Archaeology

Cite this

Mortuary practices : Their social, philosophical-religious, circumstantial, and physical determinants. / Carr, Christopher.

In: Journal of Archaeological Method and Theory, Vol. 2, No. 2, 06.1995, p. 105-200.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

@article{4cd07e83967349d9a857bf4775708729,
title = "Mortuary practices: Their social, philosophical-religious, circumstantial, and physical determinants",
abstract = "Recent, mainstream, American mortuary archaeology, in its paradigmatic outlook, middle-range theory, analytic methodology, and case studies, has emphasized social organization as the primary factor that determines mortuary practices. Broader anthropological and social science traditions have recognized philosophical-religious beliefs as additional, important determinants. The historical roots of mortuary archaeology's focus on the social, and the consequence of this on theory development, is reviewed. Then, through a Human Relations Area Files (HRAF) cross-cultural survey, the kinds of philosophical-religious, social organizational, circumstantial, and physical factors that affect specific kinds of mortuary practices, and the relative importance of these factors, are documented. The data are also used to test basic premises that mortuary archaeologists routinely use today to reconstruct social organization. A balanced, more holistic, and multidisciplinary approach, which considers many kinds of causes beyond social ones, is found necessary to interpret mortuary remains and to reconstruct the past from them.",
keywords = "archaeology of social organization, ideology, mortuary archaeology, mortuary practices",
author = "Christopher Carr",
year = "1995",
month = "6",
doi = "10.1007/BF02228990",
language = "English (US)",
volume = "2",
pages = "105--200",
journal = "Journal of Archaeological Method and Theory",
issn = "1072-5369",
publisher = "Springer New York",
number = "2",

}

TY - JOUR

T1 - Mortuary practices

T2 - Their social, philosophical-religious, circumstantial, and physical determinants

AU - Carr, Christopher

PY - 1995/6

Y1 - 1995/6

N2 - Recent, mainstream, American mortuary archaeology, in its paradigmatic outlook, middle-range theory, analytic methodology, and case studies, has emphasized social organization as the primary factor that determines mortuary practices. Broader anthropological and social science traditions have recognized philosophical-religious beliefs as additional, important determinants. The historical roots of mortuary archaeology's focus on the social, and the consequence of this on theory development, is reviewed. Then, through a Human Relations Area Files (HRAF) cross-cultural survey, the kinds of philosophical-religious, social organizational, circumstantial, and physical factors that affect specific kinds of mortuary practices, and the relative importance of these factors, are documented. The data are also used to test basic premises that mortuary archaeologists routinely use today to reconstruct social organization. A balanced, more holistic, and multidisciplinary approach, which considers many kinds of causes beyond social ones, is found necessary to interpret mortuary remains and to reconstruct the past from them.

AB - Recent, mainstream, American mortuary archaeology, in its paradigmatic outlook, middle-range theory, analytic methodology, and case studies, has emphasized social organization as the primary factor that determines mortuary practices. Broader anthropological and social science traditions have recognized philosophical-religious beliefs as additional, important determinants. The historical roots of mortuary archaeology's focus on the social, and the consequence of this on theory development, is reviewed. Then, through a Human Relations Area Files (HRAF) cross-cultural survey, the kinds of philosophical-religious, social organizational, circumstantial, and physical factors that affect specific kinds of mortuary practices, and the relative importance of these factors, are documented. The data are also used to test basic premises that mortuary archaeologists routinely use today to reconstruct social organization. A balanced, more holistic, and multidisciplinary approach, which considers many kinds of causes beyond social ones, is found necessary to interpret mortuary remains and to reconstruct the past from them.

KW - archaeology of social organization

KW - ideology

KW - mortuary archaeology

KW - mortuary practices

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=0000080674&partnerID=8YFLogxK

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/citedby.url?scp=0000080674&partnerID=8YFLogxK

U2 - 10.1007/BF02228990

DO - 10.1007/BF02228990

M3 - Article

AN - SCOPUS:0000080674

VL - 2

SP - 105

EP - 200

JO - Journal of Archaeological Method and Theory

JF - Journal of Archaeological Method and Theory

SN - 1072-5369

IS - 2

ER -