Andrew, next time your sister gives you a hard time just think how much
worse it could be, after all you could be an actuary instead of an
From: British archaeology discussion list
[mailto:[log in to unmask]]On Behalf Of Andrew Whincup
Sent: 14 February 2005 12:32
To: [log in to unmask]
Subject: Re: Past, Present and Future.
Nick Boldrini wote:
>However, the same could be said about studying and preserving the
>environment. It doesn't actually do anything.
>Except provide us with every single thing we eat, wear, and use, but I
>agree with you that much of that is useless!
And John Wood wrote:
>Well actually preserving or more rightly conserving the environment does do
>a lot. We all live in a sort of balanced ecology whereby the state of our
>environment, though not imediately obvious, has a significant effect on our
>lives and economy.
I agree entirely with both of you. I was to some extent playing devil's
advocate with my original post. I feel that there is a huge amount to be
gained from archaeology and the environment. I beleive that both are
important resources that need to be preserved.
However, neither really produces any financial, or tangible benefit in the
short term. The point I was making, albeit badly, is that the value of the
study of archaeology and the creatin of nature reserves etc are difficult to
articulate unless you start using terms like "the greater good" and "the
benefit of human understanding". Neither are likely to impress people who
are motivated by tangible benefits and cash.
My sister, who is an actuary, beleives that archaeology is fundamentally
pointless and that I should get a real job. Convincing her that she should
pay her taxes towards allowing me to study something that doesn't sustain
itself financially has been very difficult and she still doesn't really
agree with me.