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Gordon Willey

Academy of Achievement

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Gordon Willey
Gordon Willey

Gordon Willey

Academy of Achievement

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Gordon Randolph Willey (1913 - 2002) was an American archaeologist famous for his fieldwork in South and Central America as well as the southeastern United States. Regarded as one of the leading figures in 20th-century archaeology, Willey had a profound influence on the development and practice of archaeology in the Americas and has been described by colleagues as the "dean" of New World archaeology. A graduate of the University of Arizona and with a doctorate from Columbia, he conducted surveys and excavations in Peru, Ecuador, Panama, Guatemala, Honduras, Belize and the Southeastern United States. In 1953, he published the classic Prehistoric Settlement Patterns in the Viru Valley, which formed the basis for the settlement pattern studies which are a cornerstone of contemporary archaeology. He later published Method and Theory in American Archaeology, the first systematic summary of the discipline. For much of his career, he was the Senior Professor in Anthropology at Harvard University's Peabody Museum. His confident assertion that "archaeology is anthropology or it is nothing" is the implicit and explicit basis for advances in the field which have followed. Of his more than 30 books and monographs, the crowning achievement may be Introduction to American Archeology, a masterful synthesis of the archeology of North, Central and South America. In this address to the Academy of Achievement, recorded at the Academy's 1987 Summit in Scottsdale, Arizona, Professor Willey discusses his career as an archaeologist and reflects on the nature of archaeology and its relationship to history, and social, philosophical and political issues.

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Gordon Willey

Gordon Randolph Willey (1913 - 2002) was an American archaeologist famous for his fieldwork in South and Central America as well as the southeastern United States. Regarded as one of the leading figures in 20th-century archaeology, Willey had a profound influence on the development and practice of archaeology in the Americas and has been described by colleagues as the "dean" of New World archaeology. A graduate of the University of Arizona and with a doctorate from Columbia, he conducted surveys and excavations in Peru, Ecuador, Panama, Guatemala, Honduras, Belize and the Southeastern United States. In 1953, he published the classic Prehistoric Settlement Patterns in the Viru Valley, which formed the basis for the settlement pattern studies which are a cornerstone of contemporary archaeology. He later published Method and Theory in American Archaeology, the first systematic summary of the discipline. For much of his career, he was the Senior Professor in Anthropology at Harvard Univ...

10 MIN1987 JUN 26
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Gordon Willey
the END

Latest Episodes

Gordon Willey

Gordon Randolph Willey (1913 - 2002) was an American archaeologist famous for his fieldwork in South and Central America as well as the southeastern United States. Regarded as one of the leading figures in 20th-century archaeology, Willey had a profound influence on the development and practice of archaeology in the Americas and has been described by colleagues as the "dean" of New World archaeology. A graduate of the University of Arizona and with a doctorate from Columbia, he conducted surveys and excavations in Peru, Ecuador, Panama, Guatemala, Honduras, Belize and the Southeastern United States. In 1953, he published the classic Prehistoric Settlement Patterns in the Viru Valley, which formed the basis for the settlement pattern studies which are a cornerstone of contemporary archaeology. He later published Method and Theory in American Archaeology, the first systematic summary of the discipline. For much of his career, he was the Senior Professor in Anthropology at Harvard Univ...

10 MIN1987 JUN 26
Comments
Gordon Willey
the END