Topic of the Year: Shifting Paradigms. Postcolonial Archaeology and Ethical Challenges in the New Era of Conflict
We welcome any paper presenting data-driven/self-reflecting accounts of experiences based on case studies (community-based projects, educational programs, one-shot initiatives and other outreach activities) which introduce and critically discuss opportunities, limits and ethical challenges of adopting postcolonial approaches in specific conflict areas.
Papers should explore how the theoretical and practical aspects of community archaeology contribute to enhancing social resilience, economic development, and cultural awareness in war-torn environments.
If you wish to submit a paper exploring the relationship between archaeology and contemporary society which does not match the Topic of the Year, our Satura Lanx section welcomes any original and innovative contribution that can answer questions from an international to a local scale. Submissions to this section are always open.
All articles will be published online as soon as they are ready and then included in the corresponding volume, at the end of each year. For further information, check the paper formats and the journal structure – this year we introduced several novelties!
Shifting Paradigms. Postcolonial Archaeology and Ethical Challenges in the New Era of Conflict
Postcolonial archaeology seeks to understand the ways in which colonisation has influenced contemporary archaeological practice. It challenges traditional archaeological methods, questions the validity of interpretations made by archaeologists, and seeks to incorporate the perspectives of colonised peoples. Considering the imposition of power structures and ideologies, the unequal distribution of resources, and the destruction of archaeological sites, postcolonial archaeology critically examines the effects of colonisation on a region’s cultural heritage and informs contemporary discussions.
Archaeology and Ethics
Ethical reflection in archaeology typically addresses three kinds of issues: practical, philosophical, and political. How can archaeologists carry out unbiased and inclusive research? Who ‘owns’ cultural heritage and how should it be communicated? To what degree is archaeological practice entangled with political agendas? These are only some of the ethical dilemmas archaeologists must face when operating in conflict areas.
Archaeology and Conflict
The Middle East is a tragic example of how cultural heritage has often become a target in the violent conflicts which have been reverberating across the region for more than a decade. As fieldwork resumes and policies are drafted for the protection of sites and monuments in war-torn areas, archaeologists are becoming increasingly aware of empowering communities through inclusive and people-centred research strategies centred on cultural heritage.