The use of ethnographic analogies in archaeological reasoning

  • Zorica Kuzmanović Department of Archaeology Faculty of Philosophy University of Belgrade
archaeological epistemiology, deduction by analogy, Middle-range theories, ethnoarchaeology, relation archaeology


As a methodological principle analogy is present in all scientific disciplines even though, from a logical standpoint, strictly observed, it does not satisfy the criteria which would qualify it as a reliable means of deduction. The queastion of relevacy of the analogic deduction was particularly important for archaeology which, striving towards scientific objectivity, tried to find out what was the past like. However, the history of that academic tendency to a scientific ideal has uncovered an essential unreliability (dubiousness), logical inconsistency and finally the bias of all archaeological conclusions about the past, pointing to the fact that everything we learn about the past, we learn, or better said, we interpret by analogy of (on) the present.


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How to Cite
Kuzmanović, Zorica. 2009. “The Use of Ethnographic Analogies in Archaeological Reasoning”. Issues in Ethnology and Anthropology 4 (1), 133-48.