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.

Moving To WordPress.Com

Here’s the new URL: aardvarchaeology.wordpress.com

Aard Is Moving

As I learned a few hours ago, and as a few other Sb bloggers have already announced, Scienceblogs.com will shut down at the end of this month. I’m going to move Aard and continue my blogging, but I haven’t figured out where to move it yet. Suggestions from you, Dear Reader, are most welcome. It…

Good Recent Swedish Popular History

I don’t read much in Swedish. On a whim I decided to check what recent Swedish books I’ve read and liked outside work. Turns out they’re all popular history. Alla rekommenderas varmt för den som delar mina intressen! Kring Hammarby sjö. 1. Tiden före Hammarbyleden. Hans Björkman 2016. Local history. No, I’m from Borås. Ola…

October Pieces Of My Mind #1

Medieval account books were so common in Germany and considered to be so worthless, that into the early 19th century they were used as fuel to heat certain archives. Got nominated to the municipal council. Not likely to be high on the list, but still, feels good to be considered useful. I was shocked to…

September Pieces Of My Mind #3

Ben Aaronovitch = Benjamin Aaronson wrote The Rivers of London. I wonder if it’s a pen name for my grandpa’s grandpa Aaron Benjaminson, who was a farmer in Tanum. Two students are trying to play verbal chess while digging. The board is in their heads. “Well, I’m not the world’s most physical guy / But…

Jes Wienberg Shot Down My Habilitation

Habilitation, docentur, is a symbolic upgrade to your PhD found in Scandinavia and other countries with a strong element of German academic traditions. You can think of it as a boy-scout badge. It confers no salary, but it opens certain doors including that of supervising doctoral candidates. Though formally handed out by the faculty, it’s…

Three Fortunate Young Oslovians

Oslo colleagues have asked me to give a fuller account of the spring 2017 hiring that I called the most egregious case I’ve seen. This is not because they’re trying to make the University of Oslo’s Museum of Cultural History look good, but because they feel that I unfairly singled out a single hire, when…

Yeah, Screw You Too, Academia

I recently received a long-awaited verdict on an official complaint I had filed: there was in fact nothing formally wrong with the decision by the Dept of Historical Studies in Gothenburg to hire Zeppo Begonia. Since the verdict didn’t go my way, as planned I am now turning my back on academic archaeology. The reason…

September Pieces Of My Mind #2

Planting a gingko and listening to early Black Sabbath. Sailboat owners around Älgö have a lot of trouble with their wind indicators. The local crows use them as merry-go-rounds, which messes them up. Me: “I am daft today.” Autocorrect: “I am Daddy Toast.” Friendly local fellow gladly gave us permission to stash our excavation gear…

A Female Viking Warrior Interred at Birka

In archaeology, we distinguish osteological sex from artefact gender. Osteo-sex is with very few exceptions (odd chromosomal setups) the same thing as what your genitals are like. Artefact gender is the material correlate of a role you play according to the conventions of your time: e.g. whether you keep your genitals in Y-fronts or lacy…