Discovering the Past


Research is a critical and embedded component of the Archaeology Program. The students and faculty use the resources of the Center for Social Science Research and the Center for Historical Landscapes to propel their curiosity of past societies from the classroom into the unknown and back again.

Major Research Areas


Faculty and students in the Archaeology Program are a vibrant group of explorers, intent upon discovery and the innovation of methods to propel our understanding of the past. The Carolina Lowcountry abounds in research opportunities for faculty and students of archaeology. The Archaeology Program extends its research beyond these riches, however, undertaking research in the past civilizations and cultures of Europe, the Mediterranean, and Near East. Additional strengths of the Program include geoarchaeology, archaeological informatics, and heritage management.
  • The Carolina Lowcountry
    Students participate in field work at the Stone Preserve
    Students participate in field work at the Stono Preserve as part of Charleston's "living laboratory" for archaeology.

    Charleston is truly a ‘living laboratory’ for archaeology. Faculty turn to the Lowcountry to study the intersections of societies and cultures and their transformations over time. This work is aided by the College’s Stono Preserve, which holds significant resources from indigenous land use through to sharecropping of the early 20th century. Faculty focus on these changes in landscape use, in addition to urban archaeology and enslavement, rice cultivation and the African Diaspora.

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  • The Greco-Roman World

    The civilizations and cultures that have bounded the Mediterranean are wide and diverse, and faculty research on ancient Greece and Rome are noteworthy. Archaeological research sponsored by the College have explored long-term landscape use in the eastern Mediterranean (Turkey and Greece), urbanism of the Roman and early Medieval periods (Sicily, Italy, and Turkey), and changes in social practices during the transformation between paganism and Christianity (Tunisia).

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  • Egypt and West Asia
    Cover of the book "Ancient Egyptian Prisoner Statues" by Tara PrakashCharleston is privileged to have not one, but two Egyptologists on faculty. Their research covers the Old Kingdom (the Pyramid Age) to the New Kingdom (the time of Ramesses the Great), spanning a period of nearly 2,000 years. Their interests and expertise extend beyond Egypt itself to also include broader cultures in the ancient Near East. Other faculty study the same areas during later time periods, researching topics on Byzantine and Islamic archaeology.

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  • Geoarchaeology

    Geoarchaeology uses tools and data from the earth sciences to explore issues related to paleoenvironment, land use practices, and human impact on the land, among other questions. At Charleston, faculty explore the changing landscapes of the Carolina Lowcountry, the eastern seaboard, and Greece, looking to understand the relationship between past environments and landscapes and human settlement and land use.

    Faculty to follow:

  • Informatics

    Archaeology is a data-laden spatial enterprise. It requires collecting, organizing and storing information electronically, and then querying and analyzing that information via geographic information systems and other analytical tools. Archaeologists at Charleston are at the forefront of developing digital tools and applications to streamline data collection, analysis, and our sharing that information to the world.

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  • Cultural Heritage Management

    Cultural Heritage can be defined as the spaces, places, objects, buildings, arts/skills, languages, and belief systems of a human group or society. Cultural Heritage Management (CHM) is a process by which those tangible and intangible items are identified, maintained, preserved, and interpreted.

    Often, CHM is viewed as working within legal and regulatory frameworks - from the international frameworks of UNESCO to local regulations. Ideally, the process of managing cultural resources involves working with a wide variety of community partners to work on solutions that manage cultural resources within sustainable solutions for community growth and well-being.

    At Charleston, Archaeology faculty are involved in CHM from the local to international levels. At Charleston, cultural heritage is a critical component to encouraging sustainable, healthy, and livable communities now and in the future.


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Related Events


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Freshman Student and Family Orientation

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jun

24

Freshman Student and Family Orientation

Starting at 7:30 am

Read more about "Freshman Student and Family Orientation "
Background decoration

jun

24

Freshman Student and Family Orientation

Starting at 7:30 am

Read more about "Freshman Student and Family Orientation "