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Decolonial archaeology as social justice

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  24 April 2018

Yannis Hamilakis*
Affiliation:
Joukowsky Institute for Archaeology and the Ancient World, Brown University, 60 George Street, Providence, RI 02912, USA (Email: y.hamilakis@brown.edu)

Extract

And now what? This anxious question torments many of us in the current socio-political moment: that of Trumpism and Brexit; of resurgent xenophobia and racism expressed through election results and policies around Europe; and of the return of fascism and Nazism. It is this moment that has prompted González-Ruibal et al. (above) to call for a new, politicised archaeology. In so doing, they urge archaeologists to abandon the soothing liberal but ineffective embrace of communities and the public. They also argue against identitarian politics and the discourse of apolitical and abstract multiculturalism. I am in broad agreement with them, and called some years ago for a shift from ethics to politics, and for an explicit, public political stance (Hamilakis 2007). If the politicisation of archaeology was important 10 years ago, it is much more urgent now.

Type
Debate
Copyright
Copyright © Antiquity Publications Ltd, 2018 

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References

Baldwin, J. 2010. The cross of redemption: uncollected writings. New York: Random House.Google Scholar
Hamilakis, Y. 2007. From ethics to politics, in Hamilakis, Y. & Duke, P. (ed.) Archaeology and capitalism: from ethics to politics: 1540. Walnut Creek (CA): Left Coast.Google Scholar
Hamilakis, Y. 2013. Archaeology and the senses: human experience, memory, and affect. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. https://doi.org/10.1017/CBO9781139024655CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Hamilakis, Y. 2016. Archaeologies of forced and undocumented migration. Journal of Contemporary Archaeology 3: 121–39. https://doi.org/10.1558/jca.32409CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Hamilakis, Y. 2017. Sensorial assemblages: affect, memory, and temporality in assemblage thinking. Cambridge Archaeological Journal 27: 169–82. https://doi.org/10.1017/S0959774316000676CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Mbembe, A. 2017. Critique of black reason. Translated and introduction by Dubois, L.. Durham (NC): Duke University Press. https://doi.org/10.1215/9780822373230CrossRefGoogle Scholar
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