Download PDF by Randall H. McGuire: Archaeology as Political Action (California Series in Public

By Randall H. McGuire

ISBN-10: 0520254902

ISBN-13: 9780520254909

ISBN-10: 0520254910

ISBN-13: 9780520254916

ISBN-10: 1435653793

ISBN-13: 9781435653795

This booklet develops a idea and framework to explain how archaeology can give a contribution to a extra humane international. spotting that archaeology is an inherently political job, Randall H. McGuire builds at the heritage of archaeological idea and Marxist dialectical conception to show how archaeologists can use their craft to guage interpretations of the true international, build significant histories for groups, and problem the power legacies of colonialism and sophistication fight. McGuire bases his dialogue on his personal broad fieldwork within the usa and Mexico, bringing up attention-grabbing case stories to advance the assumption of archaeology as a class-based recreation.

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Extra info for Archaeology as Political Action (California Series in Public Anthropology)

Sample text

But, in no case has an individual risen to political prominence through or because of their his or her practice of archaeology. Archaeology has been put to overt political use. In 1914, Leonard Woolley and T. E. Lawrence provided “innocent” archaeological camouflage for a British military survey of the Turkish-controlled Sinai Peninsula (Wilson 1989:137). S. interests (Casteñeda 1996:118). These examples warrant mention primarily because they are exceptions in the history of our discipline. Even in these exceptional cases, however, archaeology primarily served as a stalking horse for political activities, rather than as a form of political action.

The productive question is not, How do we make archaeology one or the other? but, instead, How do archaeologists link science and politics in our practice? An honest, emancipatory political archaeology challenges the secret writings that hide and justify injustice. Such archaeology is truthful about its political content and confronts power and oppression. Neil Faulkner (2000) and Yvonne Marshall (2002, 2004) have proposed that intellectuals can build an honest, emancipatory scholarship with a community archaeology that is politically self-conscious and collaborative with local groups of people.

Government and decried the destruction of the museum as a loss to Western civilization. The burning of the National Library, the National Archives, and the Koranic Library attracted far less attention and little or no comment from archaeologists. The books, manuscripts, and records in these collections pertain to the modern history of Iraq and its people. S. government, their comments reinforced popular Western perceptions of the Iraqi people as “others” by focusing on the destruction of ancient artifacts that the public associate with Western heritage and by ignoring the destruction of the libraries (not to mention the widespread looting of hospitals) (Bernbeck 2003b:115–116; Hamilakis 2005).

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Archaeology as Political Action (California Series in Public Anthropology) by Randall H. McGuire


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