Wednesday 23 November 2016

'North Sea Area Finds Recording Group'.

Michael Lewis of the British Museum's Portable Antiquities Scheme is promoting what he calls the 'North Sea Area Finds Recording Group'. He claims 'Denmark, England, Flanders and the Netherlands are among the most progressive areas of Europe in terms of mechanisms to record archaeological finds found by members of the general public, and make these finds accessible for research and public interest in the past.
without bothering to explain the regressiveness of the other ones which apply articles 2 and 3 of the Valetta Convention and make archaeological information (NOT just about 'finds') accessible for research and public interest in the past.

Anyway he's banded together with some pals to make a 'Finds Recording Group' of some kind (its financing and relationship to other heritage bodies in the four countries is not outlined) to achieve great things:
It is our objective to work closely together, and with other North Sea areas, to:
  • Advance archaeological knowledge through the recording and research of public finds;
  • Encourage best archaeological practice in the field when searching for and recording public finds;
  • Support museum acquisitions of important archaeological material found by the public;
  • Advance international cooperation in the field of archaeological finds recording.
The reader will note there is not a word here about the discussion of the ethics of the 'public search for finds' or the degree to which the destructive effects of the practice can be mitigated by the means they are proposing to adopt. These are" 
  • Making the information on archaeological finds discovered by the public accessible to all, including international researchers as well as the wider public;
  • Distributing knowledge on regulation and responsible behaviour for the public when searching for (and recovering) archaeological objects;
  • Acting as an intermediary between finders of scientifically important finds and museum and heritage professionals in a responsible way;
  • Exchanging information on regulations, experience and expertise with international colleagues;
  • Support research through our finds recording databases and other means, by acting as intermediary for finds experts in different regions around the North Sea, and by identifying gaps in archaeological small finds knowledge.
  • Stimulate and enhance public engagement and access to the archaeological heritage at local, region, and national level;
  • Improve standards of archaeological work done by members of the public to engender a sense of shared ownership in the past;
  • Enable members of the public to contribute to the recording and handling of archaeological heritage in order to advance knowledge;
  • Advance the democratisation of heritage management in Europe through the incorporation of principles of citizen science and crowd-sourcing.
  • Promote the study of recorded finds as an internationally important body of archaeological evidence for human behaviour and interaction around the North Sea.
We will see to what extent these aims are achieved, and to what extent this gay frolic will go beyond naive ethnocentric narratives based on the distribution of emblemic artefacts which seems to be the neo-kossinnist staple of the attempts of the supporters of artefact hunting to utilise the collectables they get to see.

No comments:

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