Twisted into Form: Eclecticism and Epistemological Dissonance as a Framework for Interdisciplinarity

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With interdisciplinarity increasingly being emphasised as an unquestionable asset in archaeology, and prioritised amongst research funding institutions and university strategists, it may be worthwhile exploring the nature of collaborative research: What are the political mechanisms of interdisciplinary research and how does epistemic dissonance affect collaborative efforts? In this article, I contend truly interdisciplinary research should be capable of emphasising the sometimes radical differences between disciplinary research designs, ontologies, epistemologies and definitions of knowledge. To this end, I pursue atmosphere as an example of a phenomenon that can, or should, be studied in a way that attends to epistemic differences, since atmosphere has different implications in different disciplinary settings. I will favour postmodern eclecticism – however altmodisch and unoriginal it may seem in the 2020s – as my methodical approach to atmosphere, since it lends itself to a messy and noisy multiplicity of epistemologies and research designs doing justice to the cross-disciplinary concept of atmosphere. The strength of eclecticism is its lack of consistency and stringency, and its capacity for sustaining epistemic dissonance instead of concealing it.
Original languageEnglish
Book seriesForum Kritische Archaeologie
Pages (from-to)53-67
Publication statusPublished - 2022

    Research areas

  • Faculty of Humanities - Interdisciplinarity, Discipline, Conceptual dissonance, Eclecticism, Postmodernism, Atmosphere

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