Pop Culture

Archaeology Is a Brand!: The Meaning of Archaeology in by Cornelius Holtorf

By Cornelius Holtorf

What effect is there at the box to acknowledge that archaeology is a typical characteristic in lifestyle and pop culture? established upon the research of britain, Germany, Sweden and the us, Cornelius Holtorf examines the commonalities and peculiarities of media portrayal of archaeology in those international locations, and the variations among media displays and viewers wisdom and appeal to the topic, In his general attractive, populist type, Holtorf discusses the most concepts on hand to archaeologists in enticing with their well known representations. Possessors of a widely known, certainly valued and good underpinned model, archaeologists have to take extra heavily the attraction in their paintings.

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Sie sicherten das eroberte Gebiet mit einem Schutzwall aus Wehrtürmen, Militärlagern und Kastellen. Wissenschaftler versuchen, seinen genauen Verlauf und die Schutztechniken zu rekonstruieren. Terra X: Qumran (Doku, 45‘): Die Schriftrollen vom Toten Meer Rätsel der Vergangenheit (Doku 2/5, 45‘): Die mittelalterliche Wurfmaschine Source: Ernst Sontheim Although German TV occasionally also broadcasts documentaries about archaeological rescue excavations within Germany itself, archaeology is still often portrayed within that mindscape of exotic place – exciting adventure – spectacular discovery.

Again, the German film maker secured the support of the relevant state institution, in this case the German Archaeological Institute which is financed by the German Foreign Ministry. The approach towards archaeology taken in all these films is well illustrated by some book and chapter titles of the accompanying publications: Treasure hunters in Germany; Schliemann’s heirs and the message of the lost cities; Angkor, the Atlantis in the jungle. Graichen makes frequently explicit references to the Indiana Jones archaeological stereotype.

In addition, in 2001 alone, the five terrestrial British TV channels taken together broadcast 31 series and 19 single documentaries with archaeological content (see box below). According to another study, between 1998 and 2002, 651 archaeological documentary programmes (including repeats and episodes within series) were scheduled on the four British channels BBC 1, BBC 2, Channel 4 and ITV. The most popular ones attracted more than 5 million viewers (Kulik 2003b). Probably even higher figures could be cited for some historical documentaries.

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