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Jarita Holbrook: The Worlds of Cultural Astronomy

University of Edinburgh

In the broadest terms, cultural astronomy is the study of humans and their complex relationship with the sky and celestial bodies. Cultural Astronomy, as with astronomy, is interdisciplinary; harnessing data collection methods, tools of analysis, and theories from other disciplines as appropriate. Cultural astronomy, unlike astronomy, retains and celebrates its cultural diversity as well as its cultural relevance. As a subdiscipline, cultural astronomy is challenging intellectually because oftentimes qualitative and quantitative methods must be used in tandem during research; on the other hand, it is engaging because it shows a different way of thinking about astronomy.