Sunday, 11 October 2009

Observations on Cultural Property from the Era of "Culture Club"

US antiquities Collectors and their supporters seem to take a child-like delight in rediscovering that archaeology is “political’, that “heritage” is a political issue. We have the "Hooker Papers" (sic) and now lawyer Peter Tompa sets out to prove that "archaeological bloggers seem unwilling or unable to consider the possibility that politics impacts how nations deal with cultural property issues".

It all seems pretty odd until you realize that the post-Processual debate (going on since the mid-eighties) in archaeology is not in general an American phenomenon. Nobody working in “heritage” in about the same period is going to be unaware of the issues either. It seems it is just the no-questions-asked collectors of portable antiquities who live in some kind of a retarded alternative world where the literature on the topic which has been circulating in other areas of public life for well over two decades is only now gradually gradually penetrating. These "observers" are still back in the age when poular culture was dominated by groups such as "Duran Duran", "Wham!" and '80s boy band "Culture Club" (picture). Still, I suppose we should be grateful that some of them are waking up to what has been happening in the humanities since the 1980s – many of them still act as if we were in the Colonial world of the period before World War I.

No comments:

Creative Commons License
Ten utwór jest dostępny na licencji Creative Commons Uznanie autorstwa-Bez utworów zależnych 3.0 Unported.