Archaeologists are human. They grew up in a society, if in the west, that believes they are the most evolved in the world (a typical belief in America even after slavery was abolished and the civil rights movement). As children they probably believed God gave birth to a son who came to earth to save them and they have to symbolically eat him and drink his blood like cannibals to gain grace/blessings. They believed there was a beginning when God first created Man or the Animals (depending on whether you focus on Gen 1 or 2) and there is only one spiritual reason for living (the true path, i.e. whatever they have been told to believe). Then a certain percent will break away from these beliefs are they begin to think in our modern society. Some will even become atheist or agnostic and maybe scientists who no longer believe in their childhood religion and see it as some sort of backwards belief from an unscientific time (which makes sense). However, to assume that the initial belief structure the kids had is gone is a big assumption. Believing in one story to be all of reality and the only truth is a hard habit to break. A person rejecting the religion of their childhood will often hold onto their adulthood beliefs with religious ferocity, as they did when they were kids. Same cultlike behavior but different beliefs. In other words, the structure of how they believe is the same its only the content that has changed. This is normal human behavior.
Archaeologists are also, 'keepers of the human story'. Before the Archaeologists the Church was the keeper of the human story. The difference between the two is that the Church doesn't have a built in mechanism for self correction but archaeology does. Archaeology uses discovery to add to it facts and this creates an evolving story compared to the dogma of the Church. That said, Archaeologists are still products of society and their past. They can't help but hold onto beliefs like dogma as that's their childhood training. That means that while Archaeology has a self correcting mechanism it can still take decades, or longer, for Archaeologists to accept evidence as fact and change the story. That's still better than the Church who have had the same story since it was made canon at the Council of Nicaea in the 4th century AD.
What I find fascinating is that Archaeologists, while claiming to be scientists, will often take a stance that a discovery is bullshit if it doesn't fit into the current story in some way. AND THEN they won't go investigating for themselves!
The following is an example of an archaeologist who made a story changing discovery that was derided for decades before he found vindication. The detractors from the facts he uncovered never did any exploration themselves, they just fought him for years like a Church priesthood fighting the detractors from their story, i.e. inquisitions of the early scientists. The reason the archaeologists succeeded in holding back discovery and advancing their knowledge base and profession was because they pride themselves as 'keepers of the story of humankind' the way the Church did. Childhood belief structure of believing in dogma is still in them they have just added some scientific facts to it to give it weight ad then ignore other facts, because hey, that's what cultists do.
Anyways, here is the story of the archaeologist shunned by the mainstream cult of archaeology.
How a toxic debate over the first Americans hobbled science for decades.
In three hollows known as the Bluefish Caves, he and his team had discovered something remarkable—the bones of extinct horses and wooly mammoths bearing what seemed to be marks from human butchering and toolmaking. Radiocarbon test results dated the oldest finds to around 24,000 years before the present.
Bluefish Caves directly challenged mainstream scientific thinking. Evidence had long suggested that humans first reached the Americas around 13,000 years ago, when Asian hunters crossed a now submerged landmass known as Beringia, which joined Siberia to Alaska and Yukon during the last ice age.
From there, the migrants seemed to have hurried southward along the edges of melting ice sheets to warmer lands in what is now the United States, where they and their descendants thrived. Researchers called these southern hunters the Clovis people, after a distinctive type of spear point they carried. And the story of their arrival in the New World became known as the Clovis first model.
Cinq-Mars, however, didn’t buy that story—not a bit. His work at Bluefish Caves suggested that Asian hunters roamed northern Yukon at least 11,000 years before the arrival of the Clovis people. And other research projects lent some support to the idea. At a small scattering of sites, from Meadowcroft in Pennsylvania to Monte Verde in Chile, archaeologists had unearthed hearths, stone tools, and butchered animal remains that pointed to an earlier migration to the Americas. But rather than launching a major new search for more early evidence, the finds stirred fierce opposition and a bitter debate, “one of the most acrimonious—and unfruitful—in all of science,” noted the journal Nature. Cinq-Mars, however, was not intimidated. He fearlessly waded into the fight. Between 1979 and 2001, he published a series of studies on Bluefish Caves.
It was a brutal experience, something that Cinq-Mars once likened to the Spanish Inquisition. At conferences, audiences paid little heed to his presentations, giving short shrift to the evidence. Other researchers listened politely, then questioned his competence. The result was always the same. “When Jacques proposed [that Bluefish Caves was] 24,000, it was not accepted,” says William Josie, director of natural resources at the Vuntut Gwitchin First Nation in Old Crow. In his office at the Canadian Museum of History, Cinq-Mars fumed at the wall of closed minds. Funding for his Bluefish work grew scarce: his fieldwork eventually sputtered and died.
Today, decades later, the Clovis first model has collapsed. Based on dozens of new studies, we now know that pre-Clovis people slaughtered mastodons in Washington State, dined on desert parsley in Oregon, made all-purpose stone tools that were the Ice Age version of X-acto blades in Texas, and slept in sprawling, hide-covered homes in Chile—all between 13,800 and 15,500 years ago, possibly earlier. And in January, a Université de Montréal PhD candidate, Lauriane Bourgeon, and her colleagues published a new study on Bluefish Caves bones in the journal PLOS One, confirming that humans had butchered horses and other animals there 24,000 years ago. “It was a huge surprise,” says Bourgeon.
The new findings, says Quentin Mackie, an archaeologist at the University of Victoria in British Columbia who was not a member of the team, are prompting the first serious discussion of Bluefish Caves—nearly 40 years after its excavation. “This report will tilt the scales for some [archaeologists] towards accepting the site, and for some more, it will inspire a desire to really evaluate the caves more seriously and either generate new data or try to replicate this study,” Mackie notes.
The most important takeaway from this article that the field of archaeology may have science in it but archaeologists themselves are religious minded. Like a cult. Their initial reaction to new discoveries is to mock them and fight them like an inquisition. Not to go out an excitingly investigate them. They have their story and their colleagues who all agree with this story so they live in a very cultlike atmosphere. College and universities can be called Churches of the Intellect, as I once heard, and it makes sense given the data. An intellectual idea can become dogma. In fact, the first response of any dogmatic human when challenged is to fight it. Often, the old academics ruling the mainstream have to die off of old age (or retire) before new discoveries can alter the story in the field. That's one of the reasons a few discoveries with accurate carbon dating made no difference to archaeologists in the story above. Media will always listen to the masses of the field of archaeology so they can easily miss facts (and thats how conspiracy theories start). So archaeologists have a limited ability to quell dissent without exploration like a Church BUT it can't last forever because of its built in self correction mechanism (i.e. science). That said, it may take a while (decades) and even more discoveries, before discoveries already made challenging the mainstream dogma of archaeology, held dealy by archaeologists can be accepted. As the story above of Jacques Cinq-Mars illustrates.