Archaeology of the Great War

Discussion in 'Military History and Militaria' started by Cuddles, Feb 27, 2009.

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  1. Is this your alibi for educating Miss Trimble?
  2. "10.15am Trench Art: Material culture and the anthropological dimensions of Great War Archaeology
    Dr Nicholas Saunders "

    not sure squaddies drawing knobs on the walls of their dugouts counts as 'art' although its still probably better than anything done by Tracey Emin
  3. You may think you have rumbled me but alas the truth is sadder still. I am interested in the Great War to the point of obsession...whereas I merely mildly aroused by Miss T!

    As for trench art, I am expecting a dissertation on the things the lads did with brass, cartridge cases etc. Anyone who has visited the cafe at Hooge will be aware of the amazing potential this medium offers for artistic expression.
  4. There was an excellent article in the Journal of Material Culture on trench art, a few years ago. I'm sure it's searchable online.

    Edit: it is, and it's the same feller:
  5. I will seek it out. I have been apprised this week of the Journal of Conflict Archaeology. It looks a fascinating read too!
  6. Rumpelstiltskin - the article you speak of is by Nicholas Saunders, who will have us no doubt spell bound tomorrow from 1015!
  7. Ord_Sgt

    Ord_Sgt RIP

    Let us know how it goes Cuddles.

    I was never overly interested in the Great War until my visit to Ypres last year. I was incredibly moved by the experience and have been devouring everything I can get my hands on about the subject ever since. So much time wasted. :(
  8. Gentlefolk...I thoroughly enjoyed the seminar. Some very thought-provoking pieces of archaeology were showcased and not all of it run of the mill "digging up the missing". That said, when the case-study of the Aussies at St Yvon was being described and they described the contents of a digger's pack - a pickelhaube! Well I defy anyone civilian or military not to identify and empathise with the light-fingered Aussie. RIP.

    The way archaeology as a science can be used to defeat myth and legend was interesting. The 3rd Australian Division's training trenches and mines were studied on SPTA, then the archaeologists visited the scene of their battle debut - where it was clear the techniques and tactics they had practised were absolutely spot-on for the real thing. Another kick in the teeth for the lions led by donkeys lobby - who can shove their poetry-based analysis of military histroy up their arrses!

    There was a facinating dit on aerial photography, trench mapping and so forth and another on the archaeology of the turkish railway into Saudi - Lawrence's playground. I also discovered that archaeologists use the word "anthropologist" with a flavour of scorn and contempt that the general population reserve for "paedophile"!

    All in all £40 well-spent (although the £35 for car parking was a bit steep!) and in November the team who produced this will be doing a 20th Century Conflict Archaeology day, which will cover the SCW and other less emotionally charged conflicts! Indeed I felt I had to ask how the archs felt when, given our emotional investment in the GW through culture, literature, history, family and myth and legend, they were using hard science to refute some of that...great answers, felt very smug at sparking THAT debate, as an historian!
  9. Ord_Sgt

    Ord_Sgt RIP

    Thanks Cuddles, it sounds like it was a day well spent.

    Have you any idea if they will be doing this again at some point?