Thursday, April 13, 2017

In Praise of

Today's post will be in praise of, EXARC's official website.

EXARC is the short name for the International Organisation of Archaeological Open Air Museums and Experimental Archaeology.  It is an affiliate of the International Council of Museums. According to its website, EXARC's special function is to "represent archaeological open-air museums and experimental archaeology in the international museum circles." Its home page may be found here.

Why am I writing about EXARC?  Because there turns out to be a surprising amount of excellent, inexpensive information on historic costume (as well as other areas of material culture) on the EXARC website.

For example, as I was exploring EXARC's site a few weeks ago, I found book reviews of these two recently-published works of archaeological clothing research:
Grömer, Karina. The Art of Prehistoric Textile Making: The Development of Craft Traditions and Clothing in Central Europe. (Naturhistorisches Museum, 1st ed., Feb. 1, 2016). 
Although this is not the case for all books reviewed on, the reviews of these two books include a link to a page where a digital copy can be obtained.   A Kindle or EPub copy of the Gordino book may be purchased for $5.99 U.S. here, and a free PDF of the Grömer book, in either English or German, may be downloaded here.  I am currently reading both of these books, and likely will review both of them on this blog. 

EXARC also publishes excellent articles about experimental archaeology projects, and scholarly articles about other areas of culture than clothing, on as an on-line, peer-reviewed journal. Some of the journal articles may be viewed only by EXARC members, which are limited to museums, persons affiliated with museums, and persons actively involved in experimental archaeology, but many of the articles are freely available to the public. There is a Paypal donation button on the EXARC site, and I urge everyone who can afford to do so to consider donating to EXARC's support.  

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