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Production as Social Process



The different ways that the authors of the chapters in this volume have reconsidered production serve as examples of the application of theories of production and practice to specific bodies of archaeological data. Two themes that inform many of the chapters are considered in greater depth in this commentary. The first is the question of scale and the social subject. It is argued that the authors have attempted, within the limits of their data, to demonstrate what may be learned through consideration of particular social subjects in particular social settings, paying close attention to how what is produced, where, and by whom create possibilities for social identity. The second theme is the role of ideology and the construction of moral frameworks of value. All the chapters emphasize ideological or symbolic aspects of production that allow the authors to consider the relationship between production and social difference. It is concluded that approaching production as socially embedded action should spark new ideas or directions for research on the part of authors and readers alike.

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