Official 17 Set 2

  • Q1
  • Q2
  • Q3
  • Q4
  • Q5
  • Q6

Prehistoric Art Dating

  • Q1
  • Q2
  • Q3
  • Q4
  • Q5
  • Q6
What is the talk mainly about?
  • A. Techniques for locating archaeological sites

  • B. Methods of preserving archaeological sites

  • C. Limitations of some techniques for dating artifacts

  • D. Difficulties in determining where artifacts were created

显示答案 正确答案: C

我的笔记 编辑笔记

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    NARRATOR:Listen to part of a lecture in an art history class.

    MALE PROFESSOR:Good morning. Ready to continue our review of prehistoric art?Um, today we’ll be covering the Upper Paleolithic period—um, which I’m roughly defining as the period from 35,000 to 8,000 B.C.Um, a lot of those cave drawings you’ve all seen come from this period, uh, but we’ll also be talking about portable works of art—uh, things that could be carried around from place to place.Here’s one example.

    This sculpture is called “The Lady with the Hood,” and it was carved from ivory, probably a, a mammoth’s tusk.Its age is a bit of a mystery.According to one source, it dates from, um, 22,000 B.C., but other sources claim it’s been dated closer to 30,000 B.C.Um, Amy?

    FEMALE STUDENT:Why don’t we know the exact date when this… head was made?

    MALE PROFESSOR:That’s a fair question.We’re talking about prehistory here—uh, so, obviously, the artists didn’t put a, a signature or a date on anything they did.So, how do we know when this figure was carved?

    MALE STUDENT:Last semester, I took an archaeology class, and we spent a lot of time on, uh, studying ways to date things.One technique I remember was, um, using the location of an object to date it. Like how deep was it buried.

    MALE PROFESSOR:That would be stratigraphy.

    Stratigraphy is used for dating portable art.When archaeologists are digging at a site, they make very careful notes about which stratum—which layer of earth—they find things in.And, you know, the general rule is that the oldest layers are at the lowest level.But this only works if the site hasn’t been touched and the layers are intact.Um, a problem with this dating method is that an object could have been carried around... used for several generations before it was discarded.So, it might be much older than the layer, or even the site, where it was found.The, uh, the stratification technique gives us the minimum age of an object, which isn’t necessarily its, its true age.Uh, Tom, in your archaeology class, did you talk about radiocarbon dating?

    MALE STUDENT:Yeah, we did. Um, that had to do with, uh, chemical analysis.Something to do with measuring the amount of radiocarbon that’s left in, oh, organic stuff.Because we know how fast radiocarbon decays, we can figure out the age of the organic material.

    MALE PROFESSOR:The key word there is “organic.” Is art made of organic material?

    MALE STUDENT:Well, you said “The Lady with the Hood” was carved out of ivory—that’s organic.

    MALE PROFESSOR:Absolutely. Any other examples?

    FEMALE STUDENT:Well, when they did those cave drawings, didn’t they use, like, charcoal? Or maybe colors... dyes made from plants?

    MALE PROFESSOR:Fortunately they did, a-at least some of the time.So, it turns out that radiocarbon dating works for a lot of prehistoric art.Uh, but again, there’s a problem.Um, this technique destroys what it analyzes, so ya-you have to chip off bits of the object for testing.

    Obviously, we’re reluctant to do that in some cases. And, and apart from that, there’s, there’s another problem: the, the date tells you the age of the material—say, a bone or, or a tree—the, the object is made from, but, but not the date when the artist actually created it.So with radiocarbon dating, we get the maximum possible age for the object, but it could be younger.OK, um,let’s say our scientific analysis has produced an age range, can we narrow it down?

    FEMALE STUDENT:Um, could we look for similar styles or motifs?You know, try to find things common to one time period.

    MALE PROFESSOR:We do that all the time, and when we see similarities in pieces of art, we assume some connection in, in time or place.But.. .but is it possible that we could be imposing our own values on that analysis?

    MALE STUDENT:I’m sorry, I don’t get your point.

    Um, well, we have all kinds of preconceived ideas about how artistic styles developed.For example, a, a lot of people think the presence of details demonstrates that the work was done by a more sophisticated artist while, um, a lack of details suggests a, a primitive style.But trends in art in the last century or so certainly challenge that idea.Don’t get me wrong, though, um, analyzing the styles of prehistoric artifacts can help dating them, but we need to be careful with the idea that, um, artistic development occurs in, in a straight line from simple to complex representations.

    FEMALE STUDENT:What you’re saying is... I mean, I get the feeling that this is like a legal process, like building a legal case.The more pieces of evidence we have, the closer we get to the truth.

    MALE PROFESSOR:Great analogy. And now you can see why we don’t have an exact date for our sculpture “The Lady with the Hood.”

  • 旁白:听下面一段艺术史的课程。

    教授:早上好!准备好接着复习史前艺术这一部分的内容了吗?今天我们会讲到旧石器时代前期,这个时期时间我粗略定为公元前 35,000 年到前 8,000 年。你们已经见到的许多岩画就是在这个时期产生的,但我们同时也会讲讲这个时期移动性艺术品—那些可以被携带到不同地方的。先举个例子吧

    这儿有一座雕塑,名字叫“带头巾的女人”;它是用象牙雕刻成的,很可能是猛犸象的獠牙。它的时代有些神秘。从某种证据上推断,它的时代应该定在公元前22,000 年左右。但是别的材料表明它的时代应该被定在前 30,000 年。艾米,有问题吗?



















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    Why don’t we know the exact date when this…head was made?


    That’s a fair question. We’re talking about prehistory here—uh, so, obviously, the artists didn’t put a, a signature or a date on anything they did.  So, how do we know when this figure was carved?






Prehistoric Art Dating