This book is a collection of studies in celebration of Heinrich Härke’s significant contribution to medieval mortuary archaeology. It marks the occasion of his retirement as Reader in Archaeology at the University of Reading. The chapters reflect the diverse contributions of Härke’s research interests while simultaneously each engages with a particularly important theme in Härke’s work. The introduction points to ongoing research that is developing new understandings of mortuary evidence in the investigation of early medieval social identities. It evaluates the implications of both Härke’s work and the papers presented in this volume for the direction of future studies in this field. The starting point must be to regard mortuary practice as neither a mirror nor mirage of past social identities and social structures. Instead, graves need to be viewed as ‘halls of mirrors’ through which the archaeologist can explore past societies, their perceived pasts, future aspirations and social identities.
Available at: http://works.bepress.com/howard_williams/44/