Call for papers: Theoretical Archaeology Group 2015

North American Theoretical Archaeology Group 2015 Conference

Friday, May 22, 2015 – Sunday, May 24, 2015

New York University


Dear friends and colleagues,
This is a reminder that the North American TAG meeting will take place on May 22-24 At New York University in the heart of New York City. The theme of this year’s conference is MOVEMENT. We have received a number of wonderful session proposals, and we are now accepting titles and abstracts for individual papers and presentations. The deadline for submissions of paper titles and abstracts is 28 February 2015. Abstracts should be submitted to me at at pc4[at]nyu[dot]edu.

Any questions should be directed to Pam Crabtree at pc4[at]nyu[dot]edu. We look forward to seeing you all in May.


The Theoretical Archaeology Group began in the U.K. in 1979 as gathering of archaeologists interested in exploring the intersection of archaeology with frontiers in critical theory, philosophy, and anthropology. Since that time, an annual meeting has been held in the U.K. A sibling branch was established in Scandinavia in 2000. In 2008, the TAG-USA group was formed and an inaugural conference held at Columbia University. The conference has grown each year and now provides a vibrant link between American and European archaeologists. TAG conferences have sparked some of the most inventive archaeological articles published in venues such as Archaeological Dialogues, Antiquity, and Social Archaeology. Each year, a different institution takes responsibility for organizing the conference and serving as primary host. Dr. Pam Crabtree of the Department of Anthropology, New York University, serves on the national board and has committed to organizing the 2015 meeting in New York.

2015 Theme: Movement

Each year the organizing committee picks a new theme for the conference.  These themes are broad in order to encourage participants to challenge participants to think of their work in new theoretical ways and to draw connections between disparate views and methodologies.

Taking inspiration from the itinerant nature of the meetings themselves, the theme for 2015’s conference is “migration.” Whether it is the movement of technologies, peoples, or ideas, archaeologists are interested in how migrations occur and what makes them fail or succeed. Migrations are such a fundamental aspect of archaeological research that it can be easy to take for granted the theoretical arguments underpinning these interpretations. In light of this, the theme is intended to call attention to migrations in archaeology, and explore how far our theoretical understandings of them have come.

Perhaps it is no mistake that a conference on migration should take place in New York, a long-time port of call for people from all over the world, each group bringing with them new cultures, ideas, and ways of seeing the world.   We hope that such a setting will stimulate participants to think about theme in varied and exciting ways. Migrations in archaeology don’t just exist as an explanatory tool of the past, but also take place in theoretical movements across time and space. Archaeologists and archaeology is a mobile profession, and as such, migrations play a role not just in our understanding of the past but also in our very practice. Moreover, current trends in social media and publishing are changing the movement of ideas and theory throughout the archaeological world. We hope that sessions will explore the full-range of migrations in archaeology and are excited to see the full creative potential migrations provide!


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