Archaeometallurgical Research in East, South, and Southeast Asia, and the Pacific: Exploring Past Societies Through Metallurgical Evidence

1Institute of History and Philology, Academia Sinica

2Department of Archaeology, Silpakorn University

Archaeometallurgy, the field of study that investigates all aspects of production, use, and consumption of metals from early encounter to the recent past has advanced rapidly in the last decades in the Indo-Pacific region. Research has reached the point where useful data comparisons and syntheses are now becoming viable for this potentially far-travelled material culture medium both in terms of metalworking activities and exchange, and our developing understanding of related structural, technological, social and/or political evidences. The number of trained specialists remains low, especially with respect to the vast territories that remain archaeologically unexplored and the numerous excavated assemblages that have yet to be studied. Nevertheless, we are pleased to note a growing number of students and young researchers playing a role in enhancing our understanding of how metals and their extended lifecycles were integrated and manipulated into various economic and political spheres.

This session offers a platform to present the results of recent discoveries in archaeometallurgy and to discuss ideas and perspectives on ancient metallurgy and metals (copper alloys, iron, gold, silver, etc.) during any prehistoric and historical periods from across the Indo-Pacific region.