Pp. 3-35 (33)
Robert G. Bednarik
This chapter begins with an epistemological critique of the ways
archaeological hypotheses are formulated, developed, and then defended. It is pointed
out that most interpretations in the discipline’s history have been false or are likely to be
false, and that all major improvements were rejected for many years, having generally
been proposed by non-archaeologists. These points are illustrated with several
examples, such as those concerning the discovery of the Ice Age existence of humans;
the discovery of fossil man and “missing links”; and of Ice Age cave art. It is shown
that the treatment of heretics in Pleistocene archaeology resembles that of religious
Epistemology, Pleistocene archaeology, human evolution, random
sample, taphonomy, heretics, Boucher de Perthes, Fuhlrott, Sautuola, Dubois, Dart.
International Federation of Rock Art Organisations (IFRAO) PO Box 216 Caulfield, South Melbourne,VIC 3162, Australia.