April 4th, 2004


Eat this geezers!

I was thinking about somthing on the way home today from work. It's somthing that's bugged me before, but I haven't really voiced it.

I HATE archaeology being seen as a rich white guy's hobby.

If you think about your general archaeologist stereotype...
Well, the first thing that tends to come to mind (for me, at least)
Is some old skinny Brittish dude with a pith helmet and a bushy moustache.
And, while the science itself may have had some roots as a rich man's hobby, it's grown far past that. Archaeologists are highly trained professional scientists now, armed with knowledge and good excavation techniques. They don't raid sites and keep the best stuff for themselves.

Yet.. in this city, I noticed somthing when I was going to school at Baylor, and from time to time it still haunts me. The so called local Texas Archaeological Society (or whatever they call themselves. I have my doubts about them.)is compised of mostly older, wealther white men who dig on local sites as a hobby. They don't keep artifacts to themselves, and while they have had a lot of time in the field, so to speak.. they arn't trained scientists. They are armed with self-taught knowledge, and help out on the sites.

While this is cool... it bothers me that in this part of town some of the wealthier guys around here (while working with the University) still see this more as a rich, exotic hobby for them more than anything. We have a GREAT paleonotolical site (damned if I can't spell anything tonight)locally.. it's one of the largest mass-death sites for the Colombian mammoth in the country. To my knowledge, it's probably still only being worked on by one volunteer who excavates and documents the site as a hobby. (I wasn't allowed to work that site as my field study in Anthropology, since it had nothing to do with anthropology XD )

Anyway... I just got home from work, and I really don't feel like I'm getting my point across.. just sounding whiny and preachy with no real direction. So I think I'm going to go to sleep and maybe try again later tomorrow. T..T
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