This comprehensive textbook is the first to offer an integrated approach to geoarchaeology—the direct use of geologic concepts, methods, and knowledge to solve archaeological problems and interpret archaeological records. George (Rip) Rapp, Jr., and Christopher Hill frame geologic concepts within an archaeological context, offering specific examples that demonstrate how geologic methods can be used to interpret the human past.
A wide-ranging introduction sets the historical and theoretical stage. Subsequent chapters cover sediments and soils; contexts of archaeological record formation; paleoenvironmental reconstructions; geologic raw materials and resources; provenance studies; geologic surveying, mapping, and remote sensing; and geologic aspects of construction, destruction, site preservation, and conservation. Rapp and Hill apply earth-science approaches in archaeological settings ranging from single occupation to multicomponent habitation. They describe solutions to such problems as artifact identification and description, the integrity of artifact sets, chronological context, paleo-landscape habitat, and human-environment interactions. Their well-illustrated book, complete with glossary, will appeal to undergraduates, graduate students, and professionals in archaeology and anthropology, including those with limited earth-science experience.