Tek-Gnostics
Department of Archaeology

 

Archaeology is the science that studies human cultures through the recovery, documentation, analysis, and interpretation of material remains and environmental data, including architecture, artifacts, features, biofacts, and landscapes. Because archaeology's aim is to understand humankind, it is a humanistic endeavor. Due to its analysis of human cultures, it is closely associated with anthropology, which contain the subsets: physical anthropology, cultural anthropology, and linguistic anthropology. There is debate as to what archaeology's goals are. Some goals include the documentation and explanation of the origins and development of human cultures, understanding culture history, chronicling cultural evolution, and studying human behavior and ecology, for both prehistoric and historic societies.

Archaeologists are also concerned with the study of methods used in the discipline, and the theoretical and philosophical underpinnings underlying the questions archaeologists ask of the past.

The tasks of surveying areas in order to find new sites, excavating sites in order to recover cultural remains, classification, analysis, and preservation are all important phases of the archaeological process.

Cultural Anthropology
Cultural anthropologists study cultural variation among humans, collect observations, usually through participant observation called fieldwork and examine the impact of global economic and political processes on local cultural realities.

“Culture, or civilization, taken in its broad, ethnographic sense, is that complex whole which includes knowledge, belief, art, morals, law, custom, and any other capabilities and habits acquired by man or woman as a member of society.”

- Sir Edward Tylor

Since humans acquire culture through a processes of learned behavior and socialization, people living in different places or different circumstances develop different cultures. Anthropologists have also pointed out that through culture people can adapt to their environment in non-genetic ways, so people living in different environments will often have different cultures. Much of anthropological theory has originated in an appreciation of and interest in the tension between the local (particular cultures) and the global (a universal human nature, or the web of connections between people in distinct places/circumstances).

Xenoarchaeology
(from the Greek xenos, which means "stranger, alien" and archaeology, "study of ancients")

A important field of study within the Tek-Gnostics archaeology department is the study of xenoarchaeology. This discipline is a form of archaeology concerned with the physical remains of past (but not necessarily extinct) alien cultures. These may be found on planets or satellites, in space, the asteroid belt, planetary orbit or Lagrangian points.

At the fringes of mainstream scientific inquirery, there is a lively subculture of enthusiasts who study purported structures on the Moon or Mars. The controversial "structures" (such as the Face on Mars) are not accepted as more than natural features by "respectable" scientists.

The palaeo-contact or ancient astronaut theories, espoused by Erich von Däniken and others, are further examples of xenoarchaeological theories. These claim that the Earth was visited in prehistoric times by extraterrestrial beings. Central to this theory is the assertion that the myriad deities from most (if not all) religions actually were extraterrestrials and that their advanced technologies were interpreted as evidence of their divinity.

According to ancient astronaut theory, the apparently miraculous achievements of antiquity… such as the construction of the great pyramids in Egypt and Central America, the Moai stone heads of Easter Island and the Nazca lines of Peru… are remnant examples of this ancient intervention. Per this theory, all prehistoric knowledge, religion, and culture either came directly from extraterrestrial visitors, or were developed as a result of the influence of a cultural incubator or “mother culture" of extra-terrestrial origin.

In regard to scientific rigor, ancient astronaut theorists rely primarily on circumstantial evidence of ancient art, craftwork and legend, which they interpret as depicting extraterrestrial technologies and/or contact.
 

 

Now on Exhibit...
 

Exhibit One
Tony Partington has given a new visual perspective on some of the prehistoric sites of Northern Britain. The film combines the photographic techniques of high dynamic range imaging and time-lapse in a panoramic format, and is made up of over 70,000 individual photographs.

 
Lapse of Memory (HD) from Tony Partington on Vimeo.

 

 

Exhibit Two
A treasure trove of Tibetan art and manuscripts uncovered in "sky high" Himalayan caves could be linked to the storybook paradise of Shangri-La, says the team that made the discovery.
 

 
Secrets of Shangri-La ~ National Geographic Cave Pictures

 

 

 
Further Research and Reading...
 

 

 

Note: Jack Heart, Curator. You can find J.H.'s "Tales of Wonder" here . You can find information on J.H.'s "Expedition" here.

 

 

 
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