Dr. Martin Rundkvist is a Swedish archaeologist, journal editor, public speaker, chairman of the Swedish Skeptics Society, atheist, lefty liberal, board gamer, bookworm, and father of two.

My Bronze Age Book Is Out

Dear Reader, it is with great pleasure that I announce the PDF publication of my fifth monograph,* In the Landscape and Between Worlds. The paper version will appear in April or May. Here’s the back-cover blurb. Bronze Age settlements and burials in the Swedish provinces around Lakes Mälaren and Hjälmaren yield few bronze objects and…

Childhood Horrors

Ken & Robin have an interesting discussion in the most recent episode of their podcast, on childhood fears. Specifically, they talk about childhood responses to horror stories and movies. I was inspired to write about my own childhood horrors. Luckily there were no actual horrors in my childhood. Nobody around me was violent or insane…

March Pieces Of My Mind #1

Oh fuck. I just installed the operating system update/trojan that makes this particular Samsung smartphone model slow. I wonder how classical liberalism views labour unions. On the one hand, the right to form one is clearly a civil liberty. On the other hand, it can be seen as what Smith called a “conspiracy of businessmen”,…

Prequel to Pickwick

Stephen Jarvis’s upcoming novel Death and Mr Pickwick is a sprawling book, in terms both of its 800-page girth and of its structure. I’ve read the first third and decided to write about it now before I forget the details. There’s a present-day frame story about the narrator writing the book, commissioned by an old…

How I Select The Sites I Dig

Having read yesterday’s entry about what I need to get hold of before I can dig a site, Apel Mjausson asked me on Facebook, “How do you decide where to dig? Sweden is lousy with unexplored sites. Are you following a specific story, looking at place names, take nominations…?” Disregarding sites I’ve been paid to…

What I Need In Order To Dig My Sites

I’ve headed my own research excavations since 1996. Now I’m preparing for four weeks of fieldwork during the upcoming season. I operate as an independent scholar in this context, and none of my excavations have been prompted by land development. Here’s what I need to get hold of before I can break the turf or…

February Pieces Of My Mind #2

I thought my pet was a meerkat, but it was in fact a mere cat. Movie: Wild Tales. A collection of unconnected short wry films about revenge. Grade: pass. Eagle-eyed Roger Wikell found something that looked like a duplicate entry in my database. A flanged axe found at Vappeby hamlet by someone named Winberg, and a…

February Pieces Of My Mind #1

Boomer neighbour calls me and tells me his water meter reads “420”. “You’re such a stoner” is what I avoid replying. Every year my employers each send me a piece of paper telling me how much they’ve told the tax man that I’ve earned. A few months later, the tax man sends me a piece…

Cover Decided For My Upcoming Book

I’ve finalised the cover of my upcoming book with designer Bitte Granlund! Cover image: detail of a rock-art panel at Hemsta in Boglösa, Uppland. An axe with its characteristic s-shaped haft, an incomplete ship and two cupmarks. According to Johan Ling, the panel’s ship types and the level above the sea indicate a date in…

Facebook’s Android app seems to be monitoring whom I talk to on my phone. A few days after I’ve called somebody who wants to submit a paper to Fornvännen, or after I’ve texted the mom of one of Jrette’s buddies, the web site will suddenly suggest, “Hey, maybe you might want to be Facebook buddies…