Saturday, 9 July 2016

The British Museum, some "Citizens" and their "Archaeology"

Ethnic cleansing Brexit style
From: Paul Barford To: hboulton ; nelvin
Sent: Sat, 9 Jul 2016 19:51
Subject: Citizens and their archaeology
Dear Ms Bolton, Ms Elvin, I would be grateful if you could pass this query to the person responsible for the text of the British Museum Annual Review Launch 2016 press release [] which mentioned “citizen archaeology” and draw their attention to the two blog posts:  and

To avoid confusion, I am sure I am not the only person who would be grateful for an official statement by the British Museum:
1) defining what the BM means by the noun "archaeology" in the phrase "citizen archaeology". What is the precise definition of the term "archaeology" as far as the British Museum is concerned?
Citizens and non-citizens
2) As for the adjective "citizen", is it not nationalist and discriminatory to divide the archaeological research done in pre-Brexit Britain in terms of whether its authors are British citizens or not? In what way is that important? Should not the British Museum (one of those self-proclaimed Universal Museums) be fighting ethnocentric divisiveness in British society rather than encouraging it? Should the research of British workers (for example Museum staff) in foreign countries such as in the Middle East be treated any differently on grounds of citizenship?
I am sure I am not the only one puzzled by the terminology chosen for use in a document issued for public release (and public information) by a public institution, I trust you see the importance in clarifying any confusion the use of this phrase has caused. What do you consider archaeology to be in 2016? 
Paul Barford
Will we get a sensible answer from Brexiting Bloomsbury? Was the text written or approved by Sir Richard Lambert, Chair of the British Museum Trustees, or Hartwig Fischer, Director of the British Museum quoted in the document?

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