Written by: Katy Meyers Emery
Primary Source: Bones Don’t Lie
This is the final blog post in a series of larger blogging carnival posts hosted by the blog Doug’s Archaeology. The previous posts have focused on why we blog, what we blog about, and the potential issues of blogging. For the full question and answers to last month’s questions, check out the post here.
“The last question is where are you/we going with blogging or would you it like to go? I leave it up to you to choose between reflecting on you and your blog personally or all of archaeology blogging/bloggers or both. Tells us your goals for blogging. Or if you have none why that is? Tell us the direction that you hope blogging takes in archaeology.” – Doug’s Archaeology
I’ve actually been thinking about the future of this blog quite a bit. I’m coming to the last year or so on my PhD, and I’ve been wondering where Bones Don’t Lie fits into my larger professional life. There’s been a lot of discussion around the academic community about where blogs stand- are they a form of publication? Are they simply outreach and service to the broader public? Or are they simply a distraction (or procrastination) from ‘real’ work?
Personally, I believe that blogging is a scholarly publication if it is done correctly- meaning that it is done with citations, is based on evidence and academic interpretation, and is written in a professional manner. It is also outreach- it is a way of making our field more accessible to the public by providing it free online, by translating jargon, and making complex concepts easy to understand. Due to this, I’m going to continue Bones Don’t Lie. There are a number of things though that I want to emphasize more and some new elements I’d like to introduce.
1. Vlogging: I’d like to add a video blog component to the blog. On days when I don’t have time to sit and write out an entire cited article, it would still be nice to share something. It would be neat to discuss some of the other mortuary related things I do- like collecting trowels and the sweet cholera map I have. It also might be nice to talk about some of the complexities of this work. Talking things through can be better for some topics.
2. Question/Answer posts: I get a lot of email questions about specific topics, how to get into graduate school, how to get into this field, etc. I think it may be good to start sharing these answers for others. I’d like to add a new type of post where people can ask a question and I’ll try to give an answer, or at least point them to someone who can answer the question.
3. Mortuary Archaeology Theory: I’d like to write more posts that relate to theory. I don’t really see theory discussed online as much as it should be. Theory guides all that we do- even if we don’t discuss it, our work is grounded in it. I want to talk about how the field has developed, and how this affects what we do today. In some ways, this is the selfish part- I need to work on my own understanding of theory, and if I blog about it I am forced to do the research for it.
4. My dissertation and research: I’m going to start sharing a little more about the work that I’m doing right now. I’ve tried to not focus too much on it- this is a blog about general mortuary archaeology, not my specific focus and time period. However, I think it’d be nice to share a little more.
Thoughts? Anything you want to see here?