In Field Seasons, Anna Marie Prentiss chronicles her experiences as an archaeologist, providing an insider's look at the diverse cultures, personal agendas, and career pathways associated with American archaeology since the late twentieth century. As the narrative moves from her academic training to employment in government and private consulting to her eventual professorship at a state university, several themes emerge.
This book is about career paths. Its discussion of the diverse jobs within the archaeological profession makes it valuable to students seeking guidance about their career options. It also provides insight into the cultures of American archaeology, a discipline with many schools of thought and unique subcultures. The world of archaeological field technicians is quite different from that of government bureaucrats or academics. Prentiss also explores the elements of cultural change within archaeology while she reflects on her personal evolution throughout her thirty years within the discipline.
The book's unique personal assessment of the state of American archaeology will appeal to a broad swath of students and professionals. Students will find it an entertaining road map to possible careers while professionals will find plenty of scholarly material concerning ethics, archaeological theory, and interpretations of the archaeological record.