The Filth and the Fury

Never mind the bollocks…

here’s the archaeology of the sex pistols!

Contemporary archaeologist John Schofield, famed for other art/archaeology interventions such as ‘the Van’ (a full body strip of a site transit van including environmental assessment of the gunk from down the back of the seats) has pogoed into the latest issue of Antiquity with a curled lip and surly attitude.

In an exclusive extract reprinted here, Antiquity – the staid archaeological journal and anti-punk equivalent of the Bill Grundy show – began the interview ever so slightly, hiccup, drunk…

Antiquity: They are contemporary archaeologists. The new craze, they tell me. Their heroes? Not the nice, clean Processualists – the Binfords; the Renfrews. You see they are as drunk as I am… they are clean by comparison. They’re a group called The Sex Pistols’ Archaeologists, and I am surrounded by all of them…

Antiquity: I am told that that you’ve received a grant of forty thousand pounds to do this work. Doesn’t that seem, er, to be slightly opposed to contemporary archaeology’s anti-materialistic view of life?

Schofield: No, the more the merrier.

Antiquity: Really? Well tell me more then.

Schofield: Oh yeah. We’ve fuckin’ spent it, ain’t we. Yeah, it’s all gone. Down the boozer.

Antiquity:  Really? Good Lord! Now I want to know one thing… Are you serious or are you just trying to make us laugh? Pitt Rivers, Flinders Petrie, Gordon Childe, Mortimer Wheeler have all died…

Schofield:  They’re all heroes of ours, ain’t they?

Antiquity: Really… what? What were you saying, sir?

Schofield: They’re wonderful people.

Antiquity: Are they?

Schofield:  Oh yes! They really turn us on.

Antiquity: Well suppose they turn other people on?

Schofield: (Under his breath) That’s just their tough shit.

Antiquity: It’s what?

Schofield: Nothing. A rude word. Next question.

Antiquity: No, no, what was the rude word?

Schofield: Prehistory’s Shit.

Antiquity: Is it really? Good heavens, you frighten me to death.

Antiquity: (Turning to the research assistants behind the band) What about you girls behind? Are you worried, or are you just enjoying yourself?

Research Assistant: Enjoying myself. I always wanted to meet you.

Antiquity: (to the research assistant) Did you really?

Research Assistant: Yeah.

Antiquity: We’ll meet afterwards, shall we? (Research Assistant does a camp pout)

Schofield:  You dirty sod. You dirty old man!

Antiquity:  Well keep going, chief, keep going. Go on, you’ve got another five seconds. Say something outrageous.

Schofield: You dirty bastard! (Laughter from the group) Colin Renfrew’s a nun-touching cock-monkey.

Antiquity: Go on, again.

Schofield: You dirty fucker! Archaeology’s relevance is ultimately dictated by it’s usefulness to society, meaning archaeologies of the contemporary past are infinately more important than prehistory, n’ shit.

Antiquity: What a clever boy!

Schofield: What a fucking rotter!

Antiquity: Well, that’s it for tonight. The other rocker Diggingthedirt (and I’m saying nothing else about him!) will be back tomorrow. I’ll be seeing you soon, I hope I’m not seeing the Sex Pistols’ Archaeologists again. From me, though, goodnight.

(The studio lights fade, as Antiquity silently mouths ‘oh shit’ in sober realisation that its career is almost certainly over).

Read the Past Horizons Story – the Lascaux of Punk – HERE


  1. Pretty Vacant says:

    I remember watching the Bill Grundy interview live and can honestly say that the impression it left on me far exceeded that when i first visited Lascaux. I love Lascaux and consider it one of the most important archaeological sites in the world. Everything i am is coloured by my formative years and that interview remains as potent now as it ever did.

    Smash it up.

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