Download file in PDF format: TRAC 1994: Front Matter and Editors’ Preface (pp. i–iv)
The Theoretical Roman Archaeology Conference (TRAC) began life in 1990 in Newcastle and
has been held at a different venue each following year. It continues to thrive as an independent
conference, providing a valuable forum of discussion for the innovative application of theory to
a broad range of Roman topics. To maintain the originality and variety which have
characterised TRAC the organisers of the conference have changed every year, although it has
remained (predominantly) in the hands of post-graduate students, research assistants and other
archaeologists attached to universities.
The fourth TRAC was held in Durham over two days in March 1994 and organised by the
editors of this volume. Twenty-two papers were presented, thirteen of which are published here.
The remaining papers were not made available to the editors for publication. The papers
encompass the entire Roman period, from the late Iron Age to the Byzantine Empire and deal
with a range of theoretical issues including power, space, ideology and identity. Two additional
papers, not heard at the conference were submitted by Catherine Johns and Steven Willis. The
first is a reply to Martin Millett’s discussion of precious metal hoards, the second is a paper
originally presented at the TAG conference in 1993. On the face of it, all these papers have
little in common, and attempts to group them thematically have only been partially successful;
however, they all share a reflexive approach – an attempt to critically re-examine the status
quo in Roman archaeology.
We would like to thank all the speakers, the discussants and the audience who ensured that
TRAC9..:f was a lively affair. The smooth running of the conference was helped enormously by
the co-operation of the Department of Archaeology and St. Cuthbert’s Society, University of
Durham. Particular thanks are extended to Hilary Bowler, Yvonne Beadnell and Rachel Tyson.
The production of this volume has only been possible with the help of the referees, and we
would like to thank them warmly for their invaluable comments and for the promptness with
which they responded. The speedy appearance of this volume owes much to the individual
authors, who have cheerfully kept to our very tight deadlines, and to, the encouragement and
assistance of David Brown of Oxbow Books.
We hope that TRAC will continue to prosper and to provide interested scholars with an
informal environment for discussion and debate.
Jeremy Taylor March 1995.