Chapple, R. M. 2014 Island Life. Part III. Devenish Island. Additional Photographs. Blogspot post.pdf - pdf for free download
Chapple, R. M. 2014 Island Life. Part III. Devenish Island. Blogspot post.pdf - pdf for free download
Chapple, R. M. 2014 Derry Churches, Co. Down. Blogspot post.pdf - pdf for free download
Chapple, R. M. 2014 Mahee Castle, Co. Down. Blogspot post.pdf - pdf for free download
< 3D Images As many readers of this blog know, I no longer work in archaeology as my day job. These
Chapple, R. M. 2014 Portaferry Castle, Co. Down. Blogspot post.pdf - pdf for free download
Chapple, R. M. 2014 Island Life - Part I - Boa Island. Blogspot post.pdf - pdf for free download
Chapple, R. M. 2014 Grey Point Fort, Co. Down. Blogspot post - pdf for free download
In this, the third and final lecture, Prof. Rynne tackles 'the big three' of Irish Early Christian
Chapple, R. M. 2014 People and Their Worlds. UCD Archaeological Research Seminar. Part I. Blogspot post.pdf - pdf for free download
Archaeology of Gatherings Conference | Institute of Technology, Sligo, Ireland | October 2013 | Part III Originally posted online on 21 August 2014 at rmchapple.blogspot.com (http://rmchapple.blogspot.co.uk/2014/08/archaeology-of-gatheringsconference.html) Session 3 of the Archaeology of Gatherings Conference, Sligo, October 2013 < Part I | Part II | Part IV | Part V | Part VI > Suitably refreshed, entertained and educated by Simon O’Dwyer, [Website | Facebook | Twitter | LinkedIn | SoundCloud | YouTube] we reassembled for the first afternoon session, again chaired by Sam Moore. This portion of the conference began with Prof. Clark McPhail (University of Illinois, UrbanaChampaign). Prof. McPhail was also the Keynote Speaker (Sociology) for the conference. His chosen topic was The Life Course of Temporary Gatherings. His first observation was that archaeologists appear to prefer the term ‘gathering’, as opposed to the word ‘crowd’, which is preferred by sociologists. He then took us through a collection of his photographs from the period from 1965 to 1968, chronicling the Civil Rights, Anti-Vietnam War, and Labor Movements in the US. He described how his early work was about taking photographs and making notes. He was recording these crowds, but there was no defined methodology. At that time there were various theories on crowds and collective behaviour. However, none of the theories specified any behaviour, nor were there criteria in place to judge the behaviours of the collective.
'Going to the Match' by L. S. Lowry (Source) Prof. McPhail argued that the concept of the crowd implied homogeneity of motives, goals, and attitude. He proposed that a better definition of a ‘gathering’ is needed. His answer was: Two or more persons, occupying a common location in space and time. Going beyond this, there are various forms of gathering, including Continuous (e.g. prisons, military bases, encampments); Temporary (e.g. political rallies, parties, workspaces); Impromptu (e.g. fires, arrests, fights); Ad hoc (e.g. funerals,
demonstrations); Periodic (Hajj, sporting events). What all of these have in common is that they require an action of assembly to form the gathering, followed by an eventual dispersal process. Using L. S. Lowry’s painting 'Going to the Match' as a visual aid, McPhail noted that while one can spot some individuals within the crowd, most are in small groups. His research has confirmed this pattern – that people assemble, engage, and disperse form these large gatherings as small groups. The dispersal process may be in one of a number of forms: Routine (the process is selfinitiated; gradual; uneventful); Coerced (the process is other-directed; physical; there may be injuries sustained from, for example, pepper spray or hoses/water cannon); or Emergency (this form suggests altruistic behaviour). All gatherings are comprised of an alternating and varied combination of individual and collective actions. McPhail’s research shows that these may be broken down into a number of components: Facing (convergent facing – e.g. towards a stage or speaker); Voicing (e.g. chanting or singing); Manipulating (e.g. hands in air/clapping/gesturing (pointing, single-finger salute etc.)); Posturing and Locomotion (e.g. sitting/embracing/SleepingDragons/prostrating (islamic prayers etc.), walking, or marching). Researchers use field notes, photography, and video to identify and record how two or more individuals can interact in a crowd. Prof. McPhail’s work shows that there are some 40 elementary forms of collective action (EFCA), in terms of stances and/or interactions. Prof. McPhail and his associates have applied their process to over 150 gatherings, including the March for Life; the National Organization for Women; and the Promise Keepers’ Stand in the Gap: A Sacred Assembly of Men event at the National Mall in Washington, D.C. in 1997. In the latter case, operatives recorded 55 ‘observation minutes’ between 10am and 7pm, which included two hours before and after the event. Recording at this level of granularity allows ‘quantitate estimates of the proportions of persons in a gathering participating in one or more EFCA over time and hence a window into the dynamics of collective actions within gatherings’. McPhail argues that, although there are a number of caveats, the idea of unanimity is an illusion within group dynamics – everyone is not always doing the same thing and there is no mutually inclusive form of participation. He ended with a call for further research to produce a more general theory of purposeful action.
Stonehenge Free Festival (Source)
If this conference had awarded prizes – and it should have! – for most co-authors of a single paper Tonight we’re going party like it’s 1985! The Archaeology of Festivals in Geophysical Data would have won hands down [edit: actually we’d have had to share the prize, but there should still have been a prize!]. Dr. James Bonsall (University of Bradford, Earthsound Archaeological Geophysics) took the floor representing himself and the following: Dr. Chris Gaffney (University of Bradford); Prof. Vince Gaffney (University of Birmingham); Heather Gimson (University of Bradford, Earthsound Archaeological Geophysics), and some bloke called Robert M. Chapple (William Dunlop Archaeological Photographic Archive, Irish Radiocarbon & Dendrochronological Dates). Bonsall began by outlining the two 1985 festivals that involved the gathering of large numbers of people that made up the paper – In the vicinity of Stonehenge there was gathering of Hippies, while in Portumna, Co. Galway, there was a Scout Jamboree. From a geophysical point of view, both forms of gathering created settlement activities that produced areas of burning, ferrous debris, and dug features such as latrine pits. The Stonehenge Hidden Landscapes Project (SHLP) has carried out fluxgate gradiometery over 8km2 surrounding the central monument along with high resolution magnetometry (caesium vapour) over a smaller area. The Stonehenge landscape had long been known to have been the focus of gatherings during the Neolithic and later periods. The data collected by the SHLP during 20102012 has allowed the identification of several previously unrecorded prehistoric monuments, including new barrows and hengiform enclosures, which emphasise the importance of the landscape surrounding Stonehenge. A large area of dispersed ferrous debris was recorded during this work and has been identified as the remains of the Stonehenge Free Festival. The festival was held at this location from 1972 to 1984, and was attended by up to 65,000 people. The final (attempted) festival resulted in a confrontation with the Police on June 1st 1985, known as ‘The Battle of the Beanfield’. Documentary evidence indicates that there were a number of discrete areas dedicated to the stage, campsite, latrines, and basic supplies. Potentially confusing factors include tales of a tax being levied by the organisers to fund a post-festival cleanup, though it is uncertain how effective either the clean-up or the attempt to levy it actually was. Surviving maps of the festival layout were overlain onto the geophysical data – itself arranged by 1 hectare blocks. The geophysical data clearly shows that the campsite was differentiated by a high volume of ferrous signals, and the position of the latrines may also have been identified – at a slight remove from the rest of the activities.