Engaging and designing place: furnishings and the architecture of archaeological sites in Aboriginal Australia

Bruno David, Jean-Jacques Delannoy, Chris Urwin, Joanna Fresløv, Russell Mullett, Christine Phillips

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter (Book)Researchpeer-review


Australian Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander sites are commonly thought about as ‘natural’ locations onto which people variously undertook activities. This chapter argues and shows that sites are architectural constructs, built through a combination of design (preplanning), bricolage (improvisation), and engagement. Sites are artefacts whose cultural modes of construction are amenable to archaeological investigation. By employing a chaîne opératoire approach to the study of sites as landscape-scale artefacts, how and when they were built can be worked out, offering new insights into the cultural history of
peoples and places.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationThe Oxford Handbook of the Archaeology of Indigenous Australia and New Guinea
EditorsIan J. McNiven, Bruno David
Place of PublicationOxford UK
PublisherOxford University Press
Number of pages22
ISBN (Electronic)9780190095642
ISBN (Print)9780190095611, 9780190095628
Publication statusPublished - 2023

Publication series

NameOxford Handbooks


  • Cloggs Cave
  • Archaeomorphology
  • Architecture
  • Site furniture
  • Nawarla Gabarnmang
  • Chaînes opératoires
  • Rock shelters
  • Borologa
  • Caves
  • Social archaeology

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