Both sides of the ditch: the ethics of narrating the past in the present

Phillips, Caroline and Ross, Anne (2015). Both sides of the ditch: the ethics of narrating the past in the present. In C. Gnecco and D. Lippert (Ed.), Ethics and archaeological praxis (pp. 27-40) New York, NY, United States: Springer. doi:10.1007/978-1-4939-1646-7_3

Author Phillips, Caroline
Ross, Anne
Title of chapter Both sides of the ditch: the ethics of narrating the past in the present
Title of book Ethics and archaeological praxis
Place of Publication New York, NY, United States
Publisher Springer
Publication Year 2015
Sub-type Research book chapter (original research)
DOI 10.1007/978-1-4939-1646-7_3
Series Ethical Archaeologies: The Politics of Social Justice
ISBN 9781493916450
Editor C. Gnecco
D. Lippert
Volume number 1
Chapter number 3
Start page 27
End page 40
Total pages 14
Total chapters 15
Language eng
Abstract/Summary Archaeology is not just a technique for writing history: a statement that is very evident when working in Indigenous landscapes on both sides of the Tasman Sea. Social contexts inform the process of archaeology, with its underlying issues of scientific experts versus oral historians, colonisers versus colonised, etc. Although over the last 30 years there have been improvements in these relationships, and these should be celebrated, there is still a “ditch” to be bridged. Our paper examines the current discipline of archaeology in Australia and New Zealand, and traces the developments in ethics, legislation practice and theory that have led to its current position. Examples from both countries are explored to demonstrate the ditch that is still present between those undertaking the studies—who generally have a Western academic background—and those being studied—who may have traditional knowledge and a desire to relate to the past in a way that enhances their present. We suggest several mechanisms to overcome some of the legislative handicaps to such aspirations and continue the path towards truly equal partnerships and an ethical approach of narrating the past in the present.
Keyword Maori
Aboriginal people
Indigenous protocols
Archaeological practice
Social context
Q-Index Code B1
Q-Index Status Confirmed Code
Institutional Status UQ

Document type: Book Chapter
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Created: Fri, 27 Mar 2015, 19:47:11 EST by Dr Annie Ross on behalf of School of Geography, Planning & Env Management