All too often we talk about fake news and alternative facts as if they are new concepts. In reality history itself is constructed, and thus constrained by its authors, we have as a society taken this as truth and unfortunately there is more to history that just the past.
The Modern Myth of the British Empire with Dr. Kim A Wagner
This episode dives into the world of the British Empire - as it is viewed in Britain and the lingering narratives that surround it.
Today's guest is Kim A Wagner, Professor of Global and Imperial History, who discusses the reality of the British Empire and challanges the "balance sheet" view of history which sees historical events as simply "good" or "bad".
We also get on to the topic of the culture war that seems to be happening in the UK when it comes its own colonial legacy and in particular adherence to the reminders of that past in the forms of statues and names of buildings and colleges.
You can follow Kim on Twitter https://twitter.com/KimAtiWagner
William Dalrymple - The Anarchy - http://www.williamdalrymple.uk.com/books/the-anarchy
The Black Trowel Collective with Aris Poliopoulos and Colleen Morgan
Today's epsiode is all about mutual aid, anarchism and archaeology. I sat down recently with Aris Politopolis and Colleen Morgan, both of whom are members of The Black Trowel Collective. We discuss what the BTC does and in particular the function of its microgrants, which provide $5-$300 in grants to students of archaeology, with no questions asked.
We also talk about the ways in which anarchism has influenced this kind of work and what "anarchaeology" may mean in terms of working with others.
You can find out more about Black Trowel Collective by visiting the website https://blacktrowelcollective.wordpress.com/ or their Twitter http://twitter.com/blacktrowel
Dr. Aris Politopoulos - Twitter
Dr. Colleen Morgan - Twitter
The Modern Myth of Stirling Heritage with Dr Murray Cook
Today's episode we talk to Dr Murray Cook about his new book The Anvil of Scottish History: Stories of Stirling. We discuss what makes Stirling a place of deep history and how often this is overlooked.
We also discuss excavations during covid and the benefits of being outdoors.
You can find his book from where you purchase books or following this link https://www.extremispublishing.com/the-anvil-of-scottish-history.html
Dr. Murray Cook also runs Rampart Field School http://www.rampartscotland.co.uk/
Stirling University Profile - https://www.stir.ac.uk/about/faculties/arts-humanities/our-research/centre-for-environment-heritageand-policy/people/honorary-and-associate-members/dr-murray-cook---hon-research-fellow/
PLease also forgive the intrusions from my puppy.
The Modern Myth of the Brutish Museums with Prof. Dan Hicks
This epsode of Modern Myth is all about repatriation, restitituion and the return of artefacts. The Brutish Museums is a new book from Professor Dan Hicks, of the University of Oxford and Curator of World Archaeology at the Pitt Rivers Museum.
In this episode we discuss the items that are currently in museums that were obtained during colonial times, under duress or through direct violence. In particular Professor Hicks has been working with the Benin Dialogue Group in order to have the Benin Bronzes returned to Nigeria. We also discuss what is meant by restitution rather than repatriation and its effect on more dialogue.
You can buy The Brutish Museums from Pluto Press - https://www.plutobooks.com/9780745341767/the-brutish-museums/ or from your local bookstore
You can follow Dan on Twitter or visit his website
Heritage Traineeships with Phoenix Archer
It is always important to be open to hearing both when things go well and also when there are serious issues. In the UK, there is a feeling that systemic racism is either overemphasised or poses no real threat. However this ignorance leads to those who experience racism having to be suffer and work harder in order to have a normal life or employment.
In this conversation I am speaking to Phoenix Archer who gained a certification in Conservation with Historic Environment Scotland, a traineeship facilitated by the Next Step Initiative. Next Step provide opportunities for BAME individuals for traineeships and training in Scotland.
Phoenix tells me about her experiences at HES, based at the Engine Shed in Stirling, Scotland. She tells me about the difficulties of moving to a new city, living in a hostel before find accommodation as well as experiencing harassment at work. Despite writing letters to her managers, and making it known that she felt uncomfortable, it all seemed to fall on deaf ears.
Phoenix works for several organisations, including St Machar's Cathedral in Aberdeen, Ahead of the Game - Application and CV services and new in October BIPOC and them some, which seeks to highlight BIPOC representation in arts and Media.
The Modern Myth of Archaeology in Nigeria with Ajayi Boluwaji
This episode was a privileged to record, I sat down with Ajayi Boluwaji, an archaeology based in Nigeria to talk about the similarities and differences when working in that part of the world. We discuss the colonial hangover that has greatly affected the perception of archaeology as well as the perceived economic disadvantage to doing archaeology.
Ajayi describes how community archaeology is the way forward, in order to unravel and better interpret the past in Nigeria, by connecting people to their heritage and demonstrate the capability of the populations who lived in Nigeria, hundreds or thousands of years ago.
He describes how his Yoruba heritage informs the work he does and where his passion for archaeology comes from. We also discuss what archaeologists around the world can do to help and support their colleagues in Nigeria. For more information you can find
I ask about regional differences in archaeology and about conferences that happen in Nigeria for archaeologists.
Archaeological Association of Nigeria Conference - Link
Archaeological Association of Nigeria Facebook Page