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BRITARCH-NEWS  May 2008

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Subject:

WAC 6 roundtable

From:

S Viner <[log in to unmask]>

Reply-To:

S Viner <[log in to unmask]>

Date:

Tue, 13 May 2008 07:58:57 +0100

Content-Type:

text/plain

Parts/Attachments:

Parts/Attachments

text/plain (51 lines)

Dear All, 

Apologies to those of you that have already received this message. We are
pleased to announce a roundtable at the forthcoming World Archaeological
Congress in Dublin under the title “Personal Ethics, Social Justice, and the
Practice of Archaeology in the World”, which will be part of the theme
“Exploring WAC’s Approach(es) to Ethics” convened by Julie Hollowell and
Alexander Herrera. The abstract for this session can be found below or on the
WAC-6 web page (under “themes”). Those interested in the issues that will be
explored during the session are encouraged to join ARCH-JUSTICE, the mailing
list of Archaeologists for Global Justice, through which discussion will begin
in the coming weeks. To join please go to:
http://www.shef.ac.uk/archaeology/global-justice.html, or email Sarah Viner
<[log in to unmask]> or Umberto Albarella <[log in to unmask]>. The culmination
of this process will be a round table at WAC, and will include a series of
short position papers followed by open discussion of the ideas generated. 

We hope that many of you will be able to attend the session, but also encourage
those that cannot make the meeting in Dublin to contribute to the discussion as
it develops in the run-up to WAC. 

Anyone that is interested in giving a short position paper should contact Sarah
Viner ([log in to unmask]) or Umberto Albarella ([log in to unmask]). 

Best wishes, David Kojan (San Francisco State University), Umberto Albarella
(University of Sheffield) and Sarah Viner (University of Sheffield). 

Abstract Discussions of structural power, the development of codes of ethics,
the crafting of best practices, and the exposure of historical lapses all play
essential roles in accounting for archaeology's colonial legacy and in
improving archaeology's track record with living peoples around the world. But
ultimately, archaeology is practiced by individuals making their own decisions,
evaluations and ethical judgements, and expressing the intentions and
motivations for their work through interactions and relationships with other
individuals and communities. This session seeks to explore the issues of social
justice, the practice and ethics of archaeology and the role of the individual
archaeologist in relation to communities and other individuals. How are
archaeologists currently engaged with descendant communities, indigenous
peoples, representatives of national and international governments or their own
local communities? What are the responsibilities and motivations of individual
archaeologists practicing their craft in a world of poverty, economic
globalization, social violence and warfare? What happens when archaeologist's
sense of responsibility toward other people and communities comes into conflict
with their search for interpretations of the past? And, when, if ever, are
archaeologists prepared to put down their trowels in support of or to act as
advocates for living people and communities? In this round table discussion we
would like to discuss the specific experiences, ethical challenges and
difficult choices that archaeologists face in their daily work. What can we
learn about ethics and responsibility from an examination of this microscale of
archaeological practice? 

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