I’ve checked the literature and found out what really happened in the Goldhahn vs. Berntsson fight about barrow-building. Of course, whatever the result, it would have left the Lund Archaeological Review editors looking bad.

Comments

  1. #1 Tobias
    June 26, 2007

    Oy vey! Actually it’s kind of sad that (supposedly) intelligent grown-ups carry on like this. How about a phone call or an e-mail? However, LAR has a big part in this and I hope they strive to improve their track record henceforth.

  2. #2 Asa L
    June 27, 2007

    Good work Martin! I think this was important to clear up for all concerned.
    You also raised important points about proper procedure for journals publishing debates. Personally, I would welcome more debates like the ones in Current Anthropology, where a central text is discussed by several researchers, ending with an answer by the main author(s). Unfortunately, that takes a lot of time, energy and logistical luck on behalf of the editors, most of which are barely paid for the work they do normally.
    It is a shame that the publication of results and debates, which should be the main goal of all research, is often treated as a past-time hobby by people in control of the funding.

  3. #3 Martin R
    June 27, 2007

    I have no doubt that LAR‘s main problem is one of funding. Even the venerable Lundensian professor Berta Stjernquist says so in a recent paper:

    Meddelanden sadly no longer survives. It was replaced by Lund Archaeological Review which has no grants and not much of a future. Its current editor is Anders Ödman. He tells me that the Department of Archaeology pays for the printing but that the editor has to work very much with it. It is impossible to avoid delays in the publication.”

    Fornvännen, on the other hand, is published by the affluent Academy of Letters, who pay the people involved quite adequately, I’m happy to say.

  4. #4 Asa L
    June 27, 2007

    The problem with funding of journals is ever increasing, and pehaps exacerbated by the fact that times have changed quite significantly for people involved in research. I have met the attitude of many older colleagues that anyone should be able to write an article on their spare time, and also act as editor in the evenings – or some such. Ignoring the fact that most of them had wives acting as caretakers and housmaids in their time, and full employment that involved very little administration compared to the situation today.
    For most of us planning a future in our discipline, it is not enough to publish – we have to publish right! In accredited peer-reviewed journals. Those are really the only ones that will be considered when applying for positions. To think that there can be journals organized solely by enthusiasts, with uncertain publication dates, is simply too 20th century…

  5. #5 Martin R
    June 27, 2007

    Journal funding is only a problem in the small and generally underfunded world of the humanities. The sad reality is that if you want to be involved in archaeology, and not work in contract archaeology sectioning postholes, then you will most likely need a day job.

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