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Archaeology & Anthropological Ethics
By Clement W. Meighan

Archaeology and Anthropological Ethics

ANY TOPIC THAT MELDS politics, science and the human experience, like archaeology, is bound to generate conflict. Sadly, science often finds itself regulated by political agendas which lack vision beyond a politician's term in office; agendas which are lacking in educated scientific opinion, often resulting in policies enacted to the detriment of science or the eradication of culture.

Archaeology has long suffered under the ignorance of those who continue to view archaeologists as nothing more than treasure hunters. As long as there have been tombs, individuals have sought to profit from the items buried in them. But the science of archaeology has a moral directive...not simply to excavate items long forgotten, but to protect, preserve and study these artifacts for the benefit of science and future generations. Pothunters, looters and those who scour the earth in search of hidden treasure are not archaeologists.

This compelling essay was written by a dedicated scientist who believed in archaeology's moral directive. Anthropologists and archaeologists will find amongst these pages powerful arguments to support archaeological conservation versus repatriation.

"The American Indian has no written history. Repatriation is damaging the ONLY record the American Indian has. If the archaeology is not done [and the artifacts preserved], the ancient people remain without a history, and without a record of their existence."

1986 19 pp. Paperback. Bibliography. ISBN 0-937523-00-3

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