In This Issue
In "The Journey to El Norte," contributing editor Heather Pringle visits with archaeologist Jason De Leon to see the work he is doing in the Arizona desert to document what is a contemporary pattern of mass migration, before the record of it disappears.
Accounts of events by historians are sometimes incomplete. In "The Fight for Ancient Sicily," John W. I. Lee follows the work of archaeologist Stefano Vassallo who has been excavating the Sicilian site of ancient Himera, searching for the precise location of a famed battle between the Greeks and Carthaginians. Historians' accounts have varied and Vassallo's work is beginning to offer a detailed view of living, fighting, and dying in 480 B.C.
In order to preserve a site for future study, archaeologists seldom excavate all of it. But in the case of Mes Aynak in Afghanistan--which provides an essential record of ancient Buddhism in that country--they are hoping to uncover as much as they can before it is destroyed for the copper that lies beneath it. For "Mining Afghanistan's Past," we sent Andrew Lawler to Afghanistan to document the work being done by French archaeologist Philippe Marquis in one of the world's most dangerous places.
The struggle for who should decide what happens to the artifacts and remains of Native Americans continues. In "Who Owns the Dead?," Julian Smith fills us in on a new amendment to federal repatriation law and examines the underlying cultural values that shape the relationships among museums, Native Americans, and archaeologists.
The question of who owns history also comes into play in "Reading the Rocks," by Senior Editor Samir Patel. Patel traveled to the remote northern coast of Australia, to visit an extraordinary Aboriginal rock art site that has paintings dating from 15,000 years ago through the 1950s and constitutes the Aboriginal Australians' account of their history, including their record of contact with the world beyond their shores.
And, of course, we bring you the always popular "Top 10 Discoveries." We guarantee at least a few surprises.
Editor in Chief
Mining Afghanistan's Past
Will economic pressure destroy
the country's Buddhist heritage?
by Andrew Lawler
Top 10 Discoveries of 2010
ARCHAEOLOGY's editors reveal the year's most compelling stories
Reading the Rocks
Aboriginal Australia's painted history
by Samir S. Patel
The Fight for Ancient Sicily
Rewriting one of the ancient world's most dramatic battlefield accounts
by John W. I. Lee
The Journey to El Norte
How archaeologists are documenting the silent migration that is transforming America
by Heather Pringle
From the President
A warm welcome to the AIA's new president
by C. Brian Rose
From the Trenches
Roman helmet pokes holes in England's antiquities scheme, King Herod's theater box, remote Anasazi towers, and a lost Viking city
The Olmec go Hollywood and pictures from the spirit world
Roman Britain murder mystery, first feast, Paleo-flatbread, the Young Man of Chan Hol, earliest mountaineers, a 300-year-old watch, and more
Insider: Who Owns the Dead?
A controversial amendment to federal repatriation law complicates the relationship between Native Americans and archaeologists
by Julian Smith
Letter from Virgina
How archaeology helped reconstruct a long-lost eighteenth-century coffeehouse in Colonial Williamsburg
by Eric A. Powell
A model home—complete with family dog—from a Han Dynasty tomb