TAG2019-UCL has ended
The UCL Institute of Archaeology is delighted to host the 41st annual Theoretical Archaeology Group Conference in December 2019. Founded in 1937, the Institute is one of the largest centres for world archaeology, archaeological sciences and heritage & museum studies in the UK, situated in the heart of the capital.

Venue: UCL Institute of Education, 20 Bedford Way, London WC1H 0AL
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Tuesday, December 17 • 9:30am - 1:00pm
TAG11 | Mythical past, dangerous present: Challenging nationalism’s relationships with archaeology and history

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With the reawakening of mainstream nationalism and reestablishment of right-wing political hegemony throughout Europe and the Americas, the past is once again weaponized. Archaeological and historical narratives are being adapted to support and coalesce national identities, ethno-religious-geographic boundaries, and anti-immigration policies. These mythical pasts are also being used to justify ethnic violence, Islamophobia, and anti-Semitism – including, most recently, on 15th March 2019, the murder of 50 worshippers at a mosque in Christchurch, New Zealand. This session will examine how, where and why these mythical pasts are (re)created. It will discuss the leaky pipelines of our disciplinary public engagement. It will ask how historians and archaeologists, and other humanities scholars, can work together to challenge the misuse of archaeological and historical evidence, ancient DNA, archives, texts and images, by those involved in populist politics, the digital right and mainstream media. Through this session discussion, it is hoped that we can establish ways forward with which to engage with, and challenge, these populist narratives.

Organisers: Kenny Brophy; University of Glasgow • Mark Hobbs; University of East Anglia • Lorna Richardson; University of East Anglia

9:30 | Session organisers | Introduction

9:40 | Greg Judges, University of Leeds | Living pasts: emotions and heritage in the post-truth era

9:50 | Sarah May, Swansea University | Coffwich Drweryn, heritage of conflict and grassroots nationalism

10:00 | Bethany Hardcastle, Independent Researcher | Music, nationalism... and Vikings?

10:10 | Jonathan Last, Historic England | Dwelling in the landscape: a challenge to nationalist archaeology

10:20 | Megan Gooch, Historic Royal Palaces | Heritage, art and commemoration: a centenary without history

10:30 | Miles Russell, Bournemouth University | God’s Chosen People: dangerous narratives in Early Medieval ‘history’

10:40 | Lily Hawker-Yates, Canterbury Christ Church University | “A Part of England’s Story”

10:50 | Emily Hanscam, Durham University | The Romanian myths of origin and the postnational critique: challenging reactionary populism

11:00 | Perry Stewart, Glasgow School of Art | Cheddar Man and the Daily Mail: Representing ‘controversial’ archaeology in the British Press and reading digital public discourse

11:10 | Mark Hobbs, University of East Anglia | The assault on Holocaust memory and history: Holocaust denial and the Leuchter

11:20 | - | BREAK

11:50 | Tom Booth, Francis Crick Institute | I said it once before but it bears repeating: heritage is not just about our ancestors

12:00 | Kenny Brophy, University of Glasgow; Lorna Richardson, University of East Anglia | Discussion

13:00 | - | END


Greg Judges

University of Leeds

Sarah May

Swansea University

Bethany Hardcastle

Independent Researcher

Lily Hawker-Yates

Canterbury Christ Church University

Emily Hanscam

Durham University

Jonathan Last

Historic England

Megan Gooch

Historic Royal Palaces

Miles Russell

Bournemouth University

Perry Stewart

Glasgow School of Art

Mark Hobbs

University of East Anglia

Tom Booth

Francis Crick Institute

Kenny Brophy

University of Glasgow

Lorna-Jane Richardson

Lecturer in Digital Humanities and Heritage, University of East Anglia

Tuesday December 17, 2019 9:30am - 1:00pm GMT
Room 802/4 20 Bedford Way, Bloomsbury, London WC1H 0AL