TWENTY QUESTIONS



There are ways and means of making you talk. Assemblage gives two agents the third degree . . .

Enter here to witness the first interrogation doorway Enter here for the second session doorway




1. NAME Colin Richards

2. OCCUPATION Lecturer

3. WHAT DO YOU ACTUALLY DO? Teach and do research

4. QUALIFICATIONS B.A. & Ph.D.

5. WHAT IS YOUR FAVOURITE FIELDWORK FOOD? Fish and chips

6. WHAT WAS YOUR BIGGEST MISCONCEPTION ABOUT ARCHAEOLOGY BEFORE YOU ACTUALLY DID ANY? I thought it would be very complex

7. DO YOU PREFER PLANS OR SECTIONS? Neither

8. WHY? Archaeology has its own strange form of representing reality

9. SHANKS AND TILLEY: WHO WOULD YOU RATHER TAKE OUT ON A DATE? Tilley

10. WHAT ARE YOUR POCKET CONTENTS AT THE MOMENT? Lighter and silk cuts and keys

11. BELIEFS: JUMPERS OR CARDIGANS? SANDALS OR BOOTS? Jumpers and boots

12. NAME THREE ITEMS THAT YOU WOULD LIKE TO BE INTERRED WITH Grooved ware, surf board and a dog

13. ARE YOU BEING SUBVERSIVE WITH ANY OF THESE CHOICES? A little

14. WHERE WOULD YOU MOST LIKE TO CARRY OUT FIELDWORK AND WHY? South Pacific - so I can do archaeology (ethno) and surf good waves

15. WHAT IS YOUR FAVOURITE TIPPLE? I really like the new alchoholic [sic! - Ed] fizzy drinks

16. WHAT WOULD YOU RATHER FIND: METAL AXE, STONE AXE OR A CRISP 20 NOTE? Stone axe

17. WHO OR WHAT IS YOUR FAVOURITE FIELDWALKING FANTASY? Finding stone axes with Julia Roberts

18. WHAT HAS EXPERIMENTAL ARCHAEOLOGY DONE FOR YOU? Absolutely nothing

19. WHAT DO YOU WISH YOU HAD PAID MORE ATTENTION TO AT SCHOOL? I don't really know, maybe woodworking

20. IN 20 WORDS OR LESS, WHAT HAS ARCHAEOLOGY DONE FOR HUMANITY? It has made life a bit more interesting for a lot of people, not least me.

Colin Richards 1996

Thank you Dr. Richards. Your information has proved to be most valuable. You are free to leave.

doorway Leave the interrogation room.


1. NAME Julian Thomas

2. OCCUPATION Lecturer

3. WHAT DO YOU ACTUALLY DO? Give lectures, write things, read things, fieldwork (sometimes), talk a great deal, drink coffee

4. QUALIFICATIONS? B.Tech., M.A., Ph.D.

5. WHAT IS YOUR FAVOURITE FIELDWORK FOOD? Pasta - this isn't specific to fieldwork

6. WHAT WAS YOUR BIGGEST MISCONCEPTION ABOUT ARCHAEOLOGY BEFORE YOU ACTUALLY DID ANY? I can't remember anything particular, although I can remember feeling very ignorant, and thinking that I ought to do a lot of listening before I voiced any opinions

7. DO YOU PREFER PLANS OR SECTIONS? Plans

8. WHY? You don't have to sit in a wet hole to do them

9. SHANKS AND TILLEY: WHO WOULD YOU RATHER TAKE OUT ON A DATE? It depends; they're both very charming and suit different circumstances

10. WHAT ARE YOUR POCKET CONTENTS AT THE MOMENT? Small change, paper hankie, sunglasses

11. BELIEFS: JUMPERS OR CARDIGANS? SANDALS OR BOOTS? Both are good in context, which means I'm a relativist

12. NAME THREE ITEMS THAT YOU WOULD LIKE TO BE INTERRED WITH I'll be cremated, thanks

13. ARE YOU BEING SUBVERSIVE WITH ANY OF THESE CHOICES? Not really - it's the best I can do

14. WHERE WOULD YOU MOST LIKE TO CARRY OUT FIELDWORK AND WHY? Ireland; nice archaeology, nice scenery, nice beer

15. WHAT IS YOUR FAVOURITE TIPPLE? Wadworth's 6X

16. WHAT WOULD YOU RATHER FIND: METAL AXE, STONE AXE OR A CRISP 20 NOTE? Stone axe, predictably and sadly enough

17. WHO OR WHAT IS YOUR FAVOURITE FIELDWALKING FANTASY? Finding the stone axe in Q16

18. WHAT HAS EXPERIMENTAL ARCHAEOLOGY DONE FOR YOU? Not much; but then what have I ever done for it?

19. WHAT DO YOU WISH YOU HAD PAID MORE ATTENTION TO AT SCHOOL? I wish I'd read more books at that age

20. IN 20 WORDS OR LESS, WHAT HAS ARCHAEOLOGY DONE FOR HUMANITY? Archaeology helps us recognise that nothing about human beings is changeless, and that most things come to an end eventually.

Julian Thomas 1996

Thank you Dr. Thomas for your information. It shall be put to the most appropriate uses. You are free to go.

doorway Escape to button panel


Dr. Colin Richards is a lecturer in the Department of Archaeology at the University of Glasgow. His research interests include Neolithic archaeology, material culture studies and ethno-archaeology. His publications include the co-edited volume, Architecture and order, approaches to social space (1994), and his hectic research programme includes stints of excavation in Orkney and ethnography in Bali.

Colin surfing in Orkney!

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Dr. Julian Thomas is a Senior Lecturer in the Department of Archaeology at the University of Southampton. His research interests include the Neolithic of Western Europe, archaeological theory, modern social theory and the contemporary significance of the past. He has directed a number of excavations, including those at Bryn Celli Wen on Anglesey. Recently he has been conducting excavations at the Pict's Knowe, Dumfries, and has been appointed Secretary of the World Archaeological Congress. His recent publications include Rethinking the Neolithic (1991) and Time, Culture and Identity (1996).

Julian doesn't surf

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Together, Colin Richards and Julian Thomas have lived to regret coining the term 'structured deposition'.


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assemblage 1996