The Association for Environmental Archaeology was formed in 1979 by a group of environmental archaeologists based at the Institute of Archaeology, University of London, to provide a wide-ranging means of communication between those working in environmental archaeology and related subjects. Members’ interests range from anthropology and palaeopathology through parasitology, zooarchaeology and soils to archaeobotany and the study of prehistoric economies. The membership numbers around 400 including university, museum, government and commercially based staff, research students and amateurs. About 30% of our members live outside the UK, mostly in Europe, but including the USA and Canada, the Middle East, Far East and Australia.
WHAT ARE THE BENEFITS OF MEMBERSHIP?
The AEA holds two open meetings annually. There is a one-day meeting at which short, informal papers are presented on a wide range of topics: reports on work in progress, especially students’ research, are particularly encouraged. The papers given at the annual conference are more substantial than those given at the one-day meeting and are usually on a related theme. These papers are later published and are available to members at a reduced price . Recent volumes include The Environmental Archaeology of Industry (2003, eds. P. Murphy & P. Wiltshire), Atlantic Connections & Adaptations: Economies, Environments and Subsistence in the North Atlantic Realm (2004, eds. R. Housley & G. Coles) and Fertile Ground: Papers in Honour of Susan Limbrey (2005, eds. D. Smith, M. Brickley & W. Smith). Collections of papers from conferences have also appeared as ‘special issues’ of the journal, for example, Worlds Apart? Human Settlement and Biota of Islands (Environmental Archaeology 9.2, guest editors N. Whitehouse, E. Murphy & G. Plunkett)
Environmental Archaeology, the Journal of Human Palaeoecology
EA is the journal of the Association and is published twice a year, and sent to all members. It contains a wide range of material from short notes on methodology to substantial reports and systematic works. Everyone is encouraged to use EA as a vehicle for short articles, discussion, etc.
In addition, the Newsletter is published every three months, in February, May, August, and November, giving information about forthcoming meetings and activities and acting as a general news sheet facility for the members of the Association (e.g. it may be used to advertise jobs and publications, etc). The Association also publishes a Members’ Interest listing from time to time giving a full listing of members, their addresses and interests. This is only circulated to other individual members and not to institutions such as libraries. We only use this information if the member is willing for these details to be included in our membership interests list. On the membership form we have a box to tick if members do not wish these details to be published in our (internally circulated) membership interests listing. Members may notify us if they do not wish this information to be made available.
The Association is also able to make bulk purchases of certain publications which it can then sell to its members at the reduced price thus obtained. Members are encouraged to make suggestions for such purchases. Details of what publications are available may be obtained by looking at the AEA Books Service page.
“Environmental archaeology is a wide and multi-disciplinary science which seeks to understand past ecology — with emphasis on man’s role — and past human economy and living conditions. Its sources of evidence are diverse but the main stream of the subject is founded upon analysis of the remains of plants and animals and the sediments in which they are buried“.
(Kenward et al. 1984 in Environmental Archaeology: a regional review edited by H. Keeley, HBMC Occasional Paper 6).