The aim of this publication is to stress that cultural, social and cognitive aspects today are important goals and perspectives of technological studies, and that technological studies can contribute vitally to the interpretation of our prehistory. There is today a strong new trend among a young generation of archaeologists towards using the study of technology. This trend focuses on the understanding of the material process -- and sees these processes as logical responses and changes reflecting human behaviour and cognition. Thus, in some ways, this trend is in opposition to former morphological and static studies of artefacts. The book consists of ten case studies, which employ the study of technology as a primary methodology, and discuss issues and problems concerning the methods, results and perspectives of this methodology. The materials analysed in the studies are made from bone, stone and textiles, while the archaeological contexts are ranging from the Middle Palaeolithic to the Viking Age.
This publication is a result of the workshop "The study of technology as a method for gaining insight into social and cultural aspects of prehistory", held at the National Museum of Denmark, the 3-4 November 2005.
Mikkel Sorensen is Post-doctoral Fellow at SILA, Arctic Centre at the Ethnographic Collections, National Museum of Denmark.