Journal of Contemporary Archaeology <p>The&nbsp;<em>Journal of Contemporary Archaeology</em>&nbsp;is the first dedicated, international, peer-reviewed journal to explore archaeology’s specific contribution to understanding the present and recent past. It is concerned both with archaeologies of the contemporary world, defined temporally as belonging to the twentieth and early twenty-first centuries, as well as with reflections on the socio-political implications of doing archaeology in the contemporary world.</p> en-US <p>© Equinox Publishing Ltd.</p> <p>For information regarding our Open Access policy, <a title="Open access policy." href="Full%20details of our conditions related to copyright can be found by clicking here.">click here</a>.</p> (Alfredo González-Ruibal) (Ailsa Parkin) Thu, 16 Sep 2021 00:00:00 +0000 OJS 60 Private Struggles in Public Spaces <p>The COVID-19 pandemic has disrupted nearly every facet of our world, including some of the most fundamental forms of human behavior and our conception of the social. Everyday activities now pose a risk to individuals and to society as a whole. This radical shift in how we live has produced a wide array of material responses across the globe. This photo essay seeks to open up dialogue and ask questions about the numerous forms of COVID-19 materiality and altered landscapes that the authors have chronicled, witnessed, documented and cataloged in their communities, using archaeological and ethnographic methods. This materiality includes chalk art, graffiti, painted rocks and signage placed in both public and private spaces within the project authors’ communities. In framing our questions, we draw upon theoretical frameworks in the fields of cultural trauma studies, cultural anthropology and contemporary archaeology.</p> Dante Angelo, Kelly M. Britt, Margaret Lou Brown, Stacey L. Camp Copyright (c) 2021 Equinox Publishing Ltd. Thu, 16 Sep 2021 00:00:00 +0000 The Current Occupation of Kruger Cave, A Later Stone Age Site, South Africa <p>Contemporary occupation of archaeological sites is fraught with challenges and conflicting priorities. While prevailing opinion on heritage management recognises the fluid and continuous nature of archaeological site formation, the role of present-day communities as agents of archaeological palimpsests is often not adequately acknowledged. Contemporary communities, often unrelated to the autochthonous inhabitants of the archaeological sites, occasionally use these sites and landscapes in similar or different ways to how they were used in the past. Their use of these sites, while potentially damaging to the archaeology, simultaneously adds to, and is part of, the life history of the site, of which the excavated material and rock art are but pictures in time. Squatters who appropriate archaeological heritage sites constitute ambiguous communities under current South African heritage legislation. Yet, their role as contributing agents to archaeological sites is no less real. This article presents the case study of Kruger Cave, a Later Stone Age hunter-gatherer rock art site in South Africa, currently occupied by a lay Christian pastor. We document how the pastor is using the site and offer some thoughts around the nuances of negotiating and reconciling archaeological preservation and living heritage management.</p> Justin Bradfield, Matt Geoffrey Lotter Copyright (c) 2021 Equinox Publishing Ltd. Thu, 16 Sep 2021 00:00:00 +0000 An Ethical, Cultural and Historical Background for Cemetery-Based Human Skeletal Reference Collections <p>OPEN ACCESS-PAID-CC BY-NC-ND</p> <p>In historically Protestant countries, human skeletal reference collections curated by research institutions have been amassed from bodies dissected by anatomists, typically unclaimed cadavers from morgues and hospitals, or from remains donated to science. In contrast to these anatomy-based and donation-based collections, skeletal reference collections in historically Roman Catholic countries on mainland Europe and in Latin America are for the most part derived from unclaimed remains exhumed from modern cemeteries and ossuaries at the end of the mandated interment period. While much has been written in English about the history, context and ethical framework of anatomy-derived collections, cemetery-based collections have received very little critical attention. The current paper addresses this gap, with particular reference to cemetery-derived collections in Portugal. The cultural and historical context of southern Europe is discussed, particularly Roman Catholic mortuary traditions and the influence of the Napoleonic Code, and these provide the background for an overview of the ethical issues raised by cemetery-derived collections. Here, general principles that should guide the work of human osteologists working in archaeological contexts are relevant, as regards consent, dignity and respect and benefits to science and education, because unlike their anatomy-derived counterparts, cemetery-based collections include individuals who were once buried. </p> Hugo Cardoso Copyright (c) 2021 Equinox Publishing Ltd. Thu, 16 Sep 2021 00:00:00 +0000 Imagining Polynesia <p>Rapa Nui’s prehistoric Polynesian heritage is iconic. From the later twentieth century the island’s economy has been dependent on the tourism its prehistory attracts. However, until recently there has been little link between the modern built environment of Rapa Nui and its prehistoric past. This article tracks how during the late nineteenth and twentieth centuries, the island’s traditional domestic architecture was supplanted first by colonial then early modern Chilean architecture. The remains of this transformation are fast disappearing through contemporary demolition and an associated rejection of the past that the introduced architecture represents. We highlight how contemporary Rapa Nui architecture instead actively references its iconic prehistoric Polynesian past and positions Rapa Nui in a Polynesian context, for the first time detailing this trajectory and identifying how elements of past artistic and architectural traditions have become incorporated into the architecture of the present. Instead of presenting the intervening period as one of loss of traditional identity, this in fact emphasises a subtle continuity of Rapanui (indigenous Rapa Nui islander) identity. The study is relevant to exploring how the interacting demands and expectations of identity politics and heritage tourism (here in a Polynesian context) can impact on contemporary local architecture and the visitor milieu, reflecting modern concepts which promote the preservation of some architectures and cultural attributes over others.</p> Sue Hamilton, Hetereki Huke, Mike Seager Thomas Copyright (c) 2021 Equinox Publishing Ltd. Thu, 16 Sep 2021 00:00:00 +0000 Archaeology in the Shadow of Schindler’s List <p>This paper presents some of the preliminary results of non-invasive and invasive archaeological research on the terrain of a former German Nazi labour and concentration camp in P?aszów, a suburb of Kraków. The starting point is a reference to Schindler’s List – a film that is partially about the camp (KL Plaszow in German) and which created a certain social picture of it. This paper discusses the history of archaeological research relating to Holocaust landscapes in Poland, and sketches the historical context related to the opening, functioning, closing and later reusing of the campscape. The last section provides a glimpse into the archaeological field research and its results. The main thesis of this paper is that the history of World War II, including the Holocaust, is transforming in front of our eyes into archaeology. The paper shows how archaeology can play an active and crucial role in discovering, documenting and interpreting material remains related to the Holocaust and its manifold consequences.</p> Kamil Karski, Dawid Kobiałka Copyright (c) 2021 Equinox Publishing Ltd. Thu, 16 Sep 2021 00:00:00 +0000 Jumping Towards the Future <p>Between the late nineteenth and the mid-twentieth century numerous ski-jumping towers were built all across Sweden. This accumulation of large, monumental sporting facilities occurred even though ski jumping never attracted large numbers of practitioners. The building of such towers in the southern and central parts of Sweden, where snowy winters are far from guaranteed, is of particular interest. Today, most of the ski-jumping towers in the southern half of Sweden have been torn down, but they have left a hidden and forgotten material heritage. This paper examines the abandoned places of ski jumping, where fragmented material remains give witness to a phenomenon that once was of central importance in shaping and expressing ideals and social identities in the modernization of Sweden. The ski jumps became arenas for a new and spectacular sport that drew large crowds, but they also became landmarks and monuments of progress and prosperity in the new modern age.</p> Magnus O. Ljunge Copyright (c) 2021 Equinox Publishing Ltd. Thu, 16 Sep 2021 00:00:00 +0000 Archaeology, Gender and Indian Tamil Films <p>This article analyses the depiction of archaeology and archaeologists in contemporary popular Tamil films made in India, including a focus on the gender portrayal of archaeologists in two films in particular – one an adventure film depicting archaeological activity and the other a romance film involving a male archaeologist. Content analysis shows that both films portray some similarities in how archaeology is presented and that male and female archaeologists are shown as professionals, but that the female archaeologist is still presented for, and objectified through, the male gaze. The paper contributes to the understanding of how archaeologists are portrayed in non-Western films, particularly among films produced in India.</p> Premalatha Karupiah Copyright (c) 2021 Equinox Publishing Ltd. Thu, 16 Sep 2021 00:00:00 +0000