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Aitken's own 1990 work may be the last volume of its type to have sole authorship.Therefore, Taylor and Aitken assembled 19 of the world's leading experts on a dozen aspects of archaeological dating method and theory.Organizationally, the volume includes an editorial introduction and a preface, twelve topical chapters (varying from 24 to 44 pages in length), and contains 107 figures, 21 tables, and a five-page double-column index.Each chapter assesses a basic archaeometric technique and each has separate references--a total of 1,307 entries--so that every contribution stands by itself as a very useful synthesis.Interested readers and science-oriented scholars may wish to read all three parts; casual readers will benefit from perusing the first and third sections.
Chronometric Dating in Archaeology is the second volume in a new series initiated by Plenum Press entitled "Advances in Archaeological and Museum Science," and takes its place beside the initial volume in the series, , edited by George Rapp, Jr. The society's members come from diverse disciplines but share the common belief that natural science techniques and methods constitute an essential component of both archaeological field and laboratory studies. In 1983 he was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society of London. Taylor's name has become synonymous with the evolution and refinement of methods in radiocarbon dating, while Aitkin is celebrated as one of the leading international authorities on luminescence techniques and the chronologies of ancient climates.
The increasing accuracy of the various new techniques has brought about major changes in archaeological research strategies.
This important new text compiles the work of some of today's most innovative archaeologists who summarize progress in their respective techniques over the last 30 years - with an emphasis on developments of the last five - and the status of current research.
In the second section, I furnish a more technical and detailed appraisal of the each of the twelve chapters with comments about those major publications previously regarded by archaeologists as key sources on these specific topics.
Lastly, there is a conclusion that incorporates a general discussion about this volume and its relationship to similar works and the current status of chronometric or "time placement" dating.