April 24, 2006
Director of Media Relations
(413) 542-8417

AMHERST, Mass.— Isabelle Catteddu of the National Institute for Rescue Archaeology in France will speak on the topic “What Rescue Archaeology Has Taught Us about Early Medieval Settlements” at 4 p.m. on Friday, April 28, in Fayerweather 113 at Amherst College. Sponsored by the Amherst College Departments of History and Classics and the Five-College Medieval Studies Program, Catteddu’s lecture is free and open to the public.

In the last 20 years rescue archaeology, the investigation of sites threatened by private or public development, has allowed researchers to analyze land use and settlement patterns over long stretches of time, crossing over the traditional chronological periods of pre-historic, classical, medieval and modern. These excavations, many on a large scale, have allowed structural analyses that incorporate settlements into their surrounding natural and cultural landscapes. Aided by paleo-environmental analyses, rescue archaeologists have developed a dynamic view of the transformation of classical settlements into settlements with very different forms of organization, and with their own particular field structures, pathways, land divisions and agro-pastoral practices.