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Affirmation and Action: A Posthumanist Feminist Agenda for Archaeology
journal contributionposted on 19.11.2021, 14:37 by Rachel Crellin, Hannah Cobb
This paper explores the potential of posthumanist feminism in archaeology. We find ourselves exhausted in the face of the continuing inequalities in our discipline and the volatile political times we live in, where discrimination and xenophobia, entangled with the patriarchy, create a toxic mix. In the face of this, we draw inspiration from ongoing activism within archaeology and the emergence of posthumanist feminism beyond archaeology. We consider the juxtaposition between activism in the discipline and the lack of engagement with the same issues in our theory. Posthumanist feminism is explored as a way to unite theory and activism. It connects to and builds on existing feminisms but is argued to differ in three ways: first, posthumanist feminism widens the scope of those we should be working to achieve equality for; second, it suggests radical shifts in our ontology are necessary to bring about equality; third, it develops an alternative approach to difference. We explore the potential for posthumanist feminism to reshape narratives about the past, the way we do archaeology, and archaeological activism. In each, the aim is to turn away from the majoritarian subject and to make space for multiple alternative voices to emerge and thrive in archaeology.