Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Pompeii in Current World Archaeology

As you know from the previous post, Sarah and I have an article in the new edition of Current World Archaeology, entitled 'What's new in Pompeii.' It's not about what's 'new' in the sense of 'new discoveries', it's about new approaches to studying Pompeii and its neighbours that have been informed by the current conservation problems at the site. The main idea is to highlight how scholars working at sites in the Bay of Naples are trying to record evidence before it disappears, to examine old evidence in new ways, to record and preserve lesser known sites, and to engage the local community in their efforts. It is intended to be an up-beat piece that features some of the positive initiatives taking place on site.

Obviously we were only able to cover a few projects, and our text was also cut by the CWA editors (if anyone wants to see the original piece before the cuts, they should email me). But the publication of the article is a good opportunity to start a wider discussion about conservation and archaeology. We'd like to hear your thoughts about how conservation issues have influenced your work, or about approaches you think could be successfully adopted by others. What are you doing that others could learn from? Or what do you want to know about the way the others are working on site or in the archives? How do you see the relationship between archaeology and conservation? And what do you think the future holds for Pompeii and the other sites?

Sarah and I would welcome any thoughts, observations or comments, and we hope that as many of you as possible will take part in this discussion.

P.S. I'm sure I'm not the only one who finds it hard to imagine Sarah as a sidekick!