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Skulls from the Past: Archaeological Negotiations of Scientific Racism
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of Arts, Department of Archaeology and Ancient History.
2016 (English)In: Bulletin of the History of Archaeology, ISSN 1062-4740, E-ISSN 2047-6930, Vol. 26, no 1, article id 7Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

This paper examines the permeation of scientific racism in classical archaeology during the 1920s and 1930s. In particular, it investigates the anthropological studies of graves from the Swedish excavations at Asine and the British excavations at Mycenae and the appropriation of these results in classical archaeology. Terms like archaeological culture, people, race, in general and in precise forms, were used metonymically to signify clear-cut bounded entities with diachronically immutable characteristic traits. I argue that there were epistemological similarities between scientific racism and culture-historical archaeology since both are founded on essentialism. This article has further epistemological implications since it illustrates that foundational analytical practices, like categorizations and constructions of archaeological cultures, have conceptual affinities with discourses that many of us today find troubling. This can serve to foster critical reflection and to illustrate that histories of archaeology can contribute to the advancement of the epistemology of archaeology.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
UBIQUITY PRESS LTD , 2016. Vol. 26, no 1, article id 7
National Category
Archaeology
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-320951DOI: 10.5334/bha-590ISI: 000396586800002OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-320951DiVA, id: diva2:1091656
Available from: 2017-04-27 Created: 2017-04-27 Last updated: 2017-04-27Bibliographically approved

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CiteExportLink to record
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Citation style
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