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Sun Jun 14, 2020, 12:20 PM

How Indigenous researchers are reclaiming archeology and anthropology

DAVID P. BALL
SPECIAL TO THE GLOBE AND MAIL
PUBLISHED 2 DAYS AGO

Three grooves in the ground, just above the beach on Klahoose First Nation, were a hint of something lost below. But the community had to know for sure.

Gravesites, suspected Jodi Simkin, the band’s cultural affairs and heritage director. Trained as an archeologist, she needed to find a local team to help dig.

The group she assembled that day in 2017 included an enthusiastic Rachelle Mckay – then 29 and recently returned home with her two children to her Cortes Island reserve east of central Vancouver Island. They charted the site with ropes, assembled tools and carefully dug all day. They found nothing.

“But getting to put my hands into the ground flipped a switch for me,” Ms. Mckay said.

She had unexpectedly joined a new generation of Indigenous researchers intent on changing the face of their disciplines in Canada, and digging up new ways of researching and even thinking about fields that are seen by many Indigenous people as colonial disciplines.

Indigenous-led digs are just one example of how anthropologists and archeologists are turning their fields, once pillars of European conquest, upside down.

More:
https://www.theglobeandmail.com/canada/british-columbia/article-how-indigenous-researchers-are-reclaiming-archeology-and-anthropology/

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