In mid-2020, widespread protests against police violence and anti-Black racism swept the globe. In the wake of these protests, many people looked to build new momentum in the fight for civil rights and social justice.
The field of archaeology has its own history to confront. Racism, elitism, and colonialism suffuse the discipline and its practices. Although some scholars have long been working to unearth these stories and envision a new future for the field, much work remains to be done.
To advance critical conversations about archaeology, a coalition of organizations created a nine-part webinar series. These public dialogues—intended for both scholars and the larger public—were among academics, artists, and community members. The topics traveled from problematic monuments, to repatriation, to new forms of storytelling, to questions about the future of Indigenous and Black archaeologies. Pushing and pulling this conversation were issues of human rights, restorative justice, heritage stewardship, and systems of knowledge.
The 2020–2021 webinar series was organized by the leadership of the Society of Black Archaeologists (Justin Dunnavant and Ayana Flewellen), Indigenous Archaeology Collective (Sara Gonzalez and Ora Marek-Martinez), Cornell Institute of Archaeology and Material Studies (Adam T. Smith), Wenner-Gren Foundation for Anthropological Research (Danilyn Rutherford), and SAPIENS (Chip Colwell). Additional material support came from seven university-based archaeology centers and a museum.
Explore the webinar series below and watch the recorded panels. Join the conversation and keep it moving. And stay tuned for more to come.
The Andrew Fiske Memorial Center for Archaeological Research, University of Massachusetts, Boston