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'English topography and Welsh Community: Reflections on studying the historic Welsh landscape'

Speaker: Professor David Austin

Series: O'Donnell Lecture

Starts: 7 May 2013

Caer Cadwgan and Teifi valley

Caer Cadwgan and Teifi valley

Tuesday 7th May, Start time 5.30pm in Lecture Theatre 2.03 John Percival Building

The O’Donnell lecture of 2013 is a conscious reflection on the experience of recording and analysing the evidence for the making of the Welsh upland landscape.  The methodological tradition of landscape archaeology is that of topographical writing stretching back to the beginnings of modern historical understanding in the Enlightenment and has become an internationally recognised English ‘Anglo-Saxon’ form of scholarship.  The application of this to the landscapes of central and west Wales has been problematical, however, and led to some false dawns.  The lecture explores how the topographical tradition needs to be adjusted to reflect the nature of Welsh culture and community.


David Austin is Professor of Archaeology in the University of Wales Trinity St David where he was first appointed as a lecturer in 1976.  At core he is a landscape archaeologist with a specific interest in the later Middle Ages and the early modern era.  His work is interdisciplinary with the bulk of his publication concerned with exploring specific sites and buildings and placing them in landscape and social contexts.  These landscapes have been in the north and south-west of England, south-western Wales and south-eastern France, a majority of them concerning upland communities.  He has also had an interest in social theory as a means of providing insights into the complexity of writing about landscape and settlement development.  There has also been some media work, notably as one the first House Detectives.

Free event, all welcome

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Open To: Public