Chapter 1: The Alamogordo Atari Excavation

Regular readers of my blog know that I’ve been posting the chapters of the little book that I’m writing on the archaeology of the contemporary American experience. 

This is my way of simulating a practice that an old buddy of mine used to maintain a sense of progress with his book manuscript. Whenever he finished a chapter, he’d hang it from a hook on a book shelf in his office. When the book was done, he had a little gaggle of chapters hanging from their individual hooks in a row. It was inspiring to see!

As regular readers watched my book come together, they might have noticed that I hadn’t posted Chapter 1. There were a range of reasons for this. It was an article that I had written and then never submitted. As I revised it from an article, I wasn’t entirely satisfied with it. I kept moving it to be the back burner and written, but not done. I was (and still is) boring. 

These days, I’m mostly focusing on revising these chapters to ensure continuity throughout the book and tidying up my citations. As part of that process, I polished Chapter 1 the best that I could and it can now take its place among the finished chapters. I plan to write an afterword or epilogue which I will include when it’s done. 

Here are the first drafts of all nine chapters with the latest in bold:

Chapter 0: Introduction

Chapter 1: The Alamogordo Atari Excavation

Chapter 2: The Archaeology of Garbage

Chapter 3: Things, Materiality, and Agency

Chapter 4: Media Archaeology, Archaeogaming, and Digital Archaeology

Chapter 5: Borders, Migrants, and the Homeless

Chapter 6: Camps, Campus, and Control

Chapter 7: Industrial Ruins and the City

Chapter 8: Extractive Industry, Housing, and Climate Change in the Bakken

As always, if you have observations, constructive criticism, or just unmitigated hatred of everything that I’m doing here, please do let me know! 

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