Wednesday, 24 August 2016

More on "Citizen Archaeologists"

3 godz.3 godziny temu
Book now for the 2016 conference - 'Can Detectorists Be Archaeologists?': 
Answer: It depends what you mean when you use that singularly vague term "detectorists" (and what you mean by the phrase "can be"). I've already explored the rather simplistic British Museum exegesis of the term "archaeology" here. Mostly, if the question is can artefact hunters be archaeologists in the real sense of the word at the same time as being artefact hunters and collectors, from what we have seen of what they do and say, the answer would be "no".

Interesting isn't it that neither Heritage Action's Nigel Swift nor myself, the two most vociferous commentators on the BM's nonsensical "citizen archaeologists" have been invited to talk. So - who has? Obviously those who think they have the answer to the PAS's pathetic little straw man argument:
 though there remain concerns about the (seemingly) haphazard searching techniques employed by most finders.
Duh, no, no that is not at all what the actual concerns are, but tell that to the ivory tower idjits trotting out their glib, childish and meaningless "common ground" mantra. The question is in itself a supremely silly one, as one might expect from these days from the British Museum.

Can bus drivers be archaeologists? Yes, but how many are? Probably fewer than become ornithologists.

Vignette: There are 'metal detectorists' and then there are 'metal detectorists'.


heritageaction said...

Don't worry on my account Paul, I wouldn't go even if asked, unless I spoke from behind a screen. I and my family have had quite enough threats from dentally challenged citizen archaeologists thanks.

Yes, the question is profoundly silly, not only because it can so easily to be shown to be, but because PAS has always known it is - as evidenced by the fact all its employees are under strict written instructions to never, ever be photographed joining in at a metal detecting rally. Do you think our lack of invitations stems from a fear we might ask why that is? ;)

Paul Barford said...

With a bit more notice, I'd have gone. But as you say, there is a good reason why the PAS and its supporters only welcome submissive yes-men. I was really disappointed with the level of discussion from the (few) FLOs who turned up to my seminar two years ago. They obviously imagined that it would be enough to "shoot me down in flames" to trot out their time-worn stock mantras, and it seems they were totally unprepared for the fact that I'd heard them, thought about them years ago, and came back with a proper answer and some more questions - none of which were they prepared to actually discuss. The PAS as it stands is intellectually bankrupt - and I think the jobsworths who work there are aware of that.

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