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PUBLIC ARCHAEOLOGY , vol. 6 No.

3, 2007, 155187

Community archaeology: general


methods and standards of practice
GEMMA TULLY

Community archaeology seeks to diversify the voices involved in the interpre-


tation of the past. This sub-discipline, one of the fastest growing areas of the
field, facilitates mutual education between archaeologists and communities.
Wider recognition for the field is, however, hindered by the fact that it lacks a
clear methodological structure. In this analysis the various forms in which
community archaeology is practised are addressed through six diverse case
studies. The underlying principles of these examples are collated through a
detailed comparison with the seven-part general methodology proposed
by the Community Archaeology Project Quseir, Egypt (CAPQ), with which I
have now worked for four years. The Quseir Project offers the most explicit
community archaeology methodology published to date.
I demonstrate that a shared underlying community approach exists. I
then propose an enhanced, wider-reaching methodology for the practice of
community archaeology. I conclude that this more explicit methodology is
necessary if the sub-discipline is to achieve sincere academic acknowledge-
ment and truly benefit the communities and archaeological research that it
represents.

Introduction
It is very important that you talk with people here, because if you make an excavation
without talking to people it will mean nothing. It would be useless . . . but people trust
you now, because they see that you are not trying to hide anything from them. (Resident
of Quseir, Egypt; cited in Glazier, 2003: 26)

Community archaeology is currently practised in various forms. A growing number


of projects, some of which have been alternatively defined or have adopted a guise
outside of the archaeological realm, also share many core principles of this fast
growing area of archaeological research. The intriguing aspect of community
archaeology is its diverse application. This can perhaps be explained by the fact that
although the subject has been evolving since the 1970s and 1980s, community
archaeology still lacks a clear sense of research focus, a sound methodological struc-
ture and a set of interpretive strategies. Although it could be argued that the lack of
an explicit methodology is due to the diverse range of contexts in which community
archaeology is practised, and also because of the confidential nature of many

2007 W.S. Maney & Son Ltd DOI 10.1179/175355307X243645


156 GEMMA TULLY

community-based projects (e.g. Rosoff, 1998: 33; Peers and Brown, 2003: 10), we
cannot expect the field to prosper if we are unable to share our knowledge, successes
and failures. While there may be no standard approach to community archaeology
(Truscott, 2004: 33), there are a scattering of recent works that have begun to
articulate suitable methodological approaches (e.g. Leone et al., 1987; McDavid,
1997; Harrison, 2001: 46, 103105; Clarke, 2002). The most detailed discussion
of a methodology for community archaeology is advanced by Stephanie Moser
(2002) and the team working in Quseir, on the Red Sea coast in Egypt (Figure 1).
Based on the Community Archaeology Project at Quseir (CAPQ), Moser and
her colleagues proposed a seven-component general methodology for facilitating
effective community involvement in the study of the archaeological resource and

FIGURE 1 Location map of Quseir, drawn by Penny Copeland.


COMMUNITY ARCHAEOLOGY 157

the presentation of the past (ibid.: 220). Although the CAPQ is not intended as a
recipe for conducting all community archaeology projects, the team members
aimed to present a methodology that would offer some useful ideas for others
seeking to undertake work of this nature (ibid.: 229).
In citing the Quseir example I do not intend to imply that the CAPQ is the pinna-
cle of all community archaeology research. Indeed, the Quseir project was inspired
by the pioneering work carried out by archaeologists in Australia (see Pardoe 1990,
1992), where consultation has since become an integral component of the vast
majority of archaeological projects. However, the Quseir project set itself apart. It
received the first academic grant awarded to a community archaeology project,
in which determining a methodological strategy for community archaeology was
the explicit aim. Through this grant, the British Academy recognized community
archaeology as a research topic in its own right. Additionally, as the member of the
CAPQ team responsible for researching the educational dimension of the project, I
am well aware of the intricacies of this particular venture and therefore best placed
to build upon the work carried out here. Along with its unique status, the CAPQ
also provides the most explicit community archaeology methodology published to
date. The CAPQ thus offers a useful starting point for comparing six major com-
munity archaeology/museology projects carried out internationally. Through this
comparison, I argue that many of the methodological components promoted in
the CAPQ already underlie much of the pre-existing community-based research;
however, these have not been clearly articulated in the associated publications. By
demonstrating the fact that a shared methodology exists, I hope to show that com-
munity archaeology has a sound methodological basis and should be more widely
accepted as a research area within the discipline. While it is not necessarily the case
that community archaeology needs to justify its methodology in order to gain
mainstream respect, it nevertheless must demonstrate consistency. A community
archaeology methodology is therefore necessary, as only when community practice
begins to work within the established scientific framework of archaeology and
anthropology will it become recognized as valid and respected academically. Only
then can community archaeology truly begin to benefit the cultures and knowledge
systems it represents (Phillips, 2003: 159160). However, the realization that a
general methodology, albeit an understated one, exists, is only the first step. A
more generalized methodology must be proposed one that is not based so heavily
in the specific context of Quseir and which incorporates further methodological
elements arising from other community archaeology case studies. Aiming to pro-
duce such a methodology, I begin my analysis with the broad framework of the
CAPQ, then consider six additional examples and, finally, address further research
into community projects.

What is community archaeology?


Emerging in the 1970s and 1980s out of the political action of numerous post-
colonial, indigenous communities (see Moser, 1995; Vinnicombe, 1995), the
appearance of critical theory (see Althusser, 1971; Guess, 1981; Wylie, 1985;
Handsman and Leone, 1989; Potter, 1994), and the growth of socio-political
158 GEMMA TULLY

discussions within archaeology (e.g. Gero, Lacy and Blakey, 1983; Gero, 1985;
Layton, 1989; Pinsky and Wylie, 1989; Atkinson et al., 1996; Franklin, 1997;
McDavid and Babson, 1997; Meskell, 1998), indigenous, community or postco-
lonial archaeology is essentially a means of collaborating with local communities,
at every stage of the research process, to facilitate effective involvement in the
investigation and presentation of the past (Moser et al., 2002: 220). The develop-
ment of codes of ethics such as those established by the Australian Archaeology
Association (AAA) (Davidson, 1991) and the Canadian Task Force (1992) has
pushed the process beyond outreach or public archaeology (see Edwards-Ingram,
1997; McManamon, 2000; Sandell, 2002). These codes of ethics are quite different
from laws such as the Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act
(NAGPRA) 1990. Rigorously outlined political directives can be as much of a
hindrance as a help; they define the legalities of consultation, meaning that the
incorporation of communities only need be taken as far as the law demands.
Other initiatives, alongside the independent steps taken by individual projects, are
encouraging more organic and holistic forms of collaboration.
Community archaeology is based on the premise that better archaeology can be
achieved when more diverse voices are involved in the interpretation of the past.
This does not mean compromising the scientific nature of archaeology, but rather
simply realizing how research integrates with society (Pardoe, 1992: 139) and that
it can be used to challenge the inequality of dominant historical paradigms (Schmidt
and Patterson, 1995: 6). Even though some archaeologists are still unprepared to
accept this fact, it has become increasingly clear that archaeological discoveries are
highly relevant to numerous social and political situations. This is the case where
archaeological data is used to substantiate unequal ideologies of authority and con-
trol of the past (Leone et al., 1987: 283). Community archaeology is also relevant to
the general process of social cohesion, for example where the inhabitants of modern
towns and villages can be brought together through a sense of ownership of their
local heritage (e.g. Aitken and Simpson 2005). Thus, the realization is dawning that
community archaeology is relevant not only to indigenous, postcolonial and mino-
rity groups but to all forms of community, including those in the first world and
throughout the globe (see Sandell, 2002: 67; Nicks, 2003: 1927; Hgberg and
Holtorf, 2006). It is also becoming apparent that the benefits to local communities
are reciprocated in terms of facilitating better archaeology through mutual educa-
tion (Watkins, 2000: 171), as archaeologists are confronted with alternative per-
spectives, a vital step if archaeology as a discipline is to have a future (Marshall,
2002: 218).
In defining the field of community archaeology it is fundamental to recognize the
complexity of identifying a source community. On a basic level the community can
be defined as the group of individuals living within the vicinity of the area being
investigated. The term community seems to imply a sense of cohesion and solidarity
created through a common interest in a shared locale (Gilroy, 1987: 247). This
cohesion is, however, created as opposed to authentic. Communities are not
homogeneous; they are multifaceted and support as many internal differences as
they do similarities (Hall, 1990; Guibernau 1996). Thus, essentialism must be
avoided when it seeks to define communities (Rutherford, 1990: 10), to ensure that
COMMUNITY ARCHAEOLOGY 159

subjective contemporary interpretations are not read as universal and enduring


rather than as immediate constructions within specific social worlds (Smith 2004:
1). One way in which this perception of community as a unified whole can be chal-
lenged in community archaeology is through the inclusion of dissenting voices to
emphasize difference and heterogeneity whenever they occur (see Mercer 1994: 57;
Rutherford, 1990: 10; Glazier, 2003: 16.) This recognition makes it possible to talk
about a community without enforced homogenization, as the multiple, intersecting
identity constructs class, gender, religion, economic status, ethnicity and sexuality
are addressed (Glazier 2003: 16). The location-based concept is therefore a useful
starting point for investigating the relationship between a current population and a
particular archaeological site, as it can incorporate the multiple identities of groups
within a community without seeking to divide them. In some cases, however, loca-
tion naturally defines roots, as communities choose to promote a traced heritage
and ancestry. Nonetheless, an active interest in the specific past being addressed
is not a prerequisite for inclusion within a community archaeology project. As
Darren Glaziers (2003) research at Quseir al-Qadim has shown, archaeological
investigations have the potential to impact upon a diverse range of people, whether
they consciously decide to be involved in the process or not. Within this realm we
also have to consider issues of displacement and migration. For example, many
ancestral Aboriginal Australian and Native American Indian populations may not
necessarily reside in the area being studied. Similarly, defining a community through
current residents is limiting. We have to ask whether length of familial residence
gives an individual a stronger voice than a recent incomer (Gosden 2001: 257) and
whether we should include those who have moved away but maintain strong com-
munity links. There are also other types of community that are not connected
by locality or lineage but by interest or beliefs. For example, groups with a vested
interest in sites, such as the Mother Goddess worshippers at atalhyk (Hodder,
1996), provide perhaps the most complex challenges in the definition of a commu-
nity as they are practically unbounded. Because the concept of community and the
notion of the local are both imagined theoretical constructs (see Anderson, 1983;
Gilroy, 1987: 247; Urry, 1995: 71), all of the above factors can be incorporated if
communities are individually determined according to the context of each project.

Community museology
Consulting with source communities does not end at the completion of an
excavation, as the term community archaeology might imply. As previously stated,
community archaeology aims to facilitate collaboration at all stages of research,
thus playing an important role in the subsequent presentation of the results of
research (Peers and Brown, 2003: 1). This raises the important connection between
community archaeology and museology. Museums, like excavations, are no longer
seen as neutral ground, and the national, moral, historical and ethical impacts that
exhibitions can have on local communities in terms of access, interpretation and
ownership are slowly being accepted (Herle, 2000: 258). Museums can act as agents
for social change (see Sandell, 2002: 35; Nicks, 2003: 27) and, as Moser (2006: 2)
has recently demonstrated, museums effectively make knowledge about the past.
160 GEMMA TULLY

Therefore, it is vital that the communities whose heritage is being represented have
a say in all areas of exhibition creation. This does not merely include participating
in the wording of text or object selections, but needs to incorporate decisions about
the subjects and themes that are the focus of the exhibition. The space in which the
displays are organized, the decoration and layout also need to be collaboratively
addressed to ensure that the knowledge constructed creates the meaning communi-
ties hope to impart rather than telling us more about the designer/author than the
subject matter. By involving source communities in decisions about lighting, display
types, object handling and even museum logos, fresh meanings as well as culturally
sensitive museum displays can help take the discipline forward (see Karp et al.,
1992; Peers and Brown, 2003). Access to community objects, much like archae-
ological sites, is especially important here as they not only act as a bridge between
past and present but can encourage the retelling of folklore, strengthen notions
of identity and revive a pride in community heritage. Much like archaeological
excavation, developing out of the new trends in the social sciences and the insistence
of local communities in playing an active role in the interpretation of their past,
community museology is gathering pace and needs to be seen as an integral part of
the grand scheme for successful community archaeology.

The community archaeology project at Quseir and a methodology for


community archaeology
The modern city of Quseir has a rich and turbulent history. Nine kilometres to its
north lie the remains of Quseir al-Qadim, a Roman and later Mameluke harbour of
considerable archaeological significance, believed to have been abandoned as a
result of a combination of harbour siltation, famine and the Black Death in the early
14th century (see Peacock, 1993: 232; Blue and Dix, 1999, 2000). Partially exca-
vated in the late 1970s by a team from the University of Chicago (see Whitcomb
and Johnson, 1979, 1982), five subsequent field seasons took place between 1999
and 2003 led by David Peacock of the University of Southampton, which further
revealed the importance of the site (see Peacock et al., 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003).
The modern city of Quseir has been growing since the early 16th century, shifting in
primary function from trading post to goods and pilgrimage port, from phosphate
centre to tourist hideaway under a barrage of rulers: Ottoman, French, English
and Egyptian. Under the invitation of the director of excavation, David Peacock,
Stephanie Moser initiated the community archaeology project in 1998 in order to
explore the role of the past in the present within this unique context. One of the key
research objectives was to develop a useful methodology to provide a structure for
collecting data (see Moser et al., 2002) and to this end seven key components were
proposed for the conduct of community archaeology (ibid.: 229242):
1. Communication and collaboration
2. Employment and training
3. Public presentation
4. Interviews and oral history
5. Educational resources
6. Photographic and video archive
7. Community controlled merchandising
COMMUNITY ARCHAEOLOGY 161

Research projects have been carried out on all of these aspects of the CAPQ (see
Philips, 2001; Seymour, 2001; Glazier, 2003; Slack, 2003; Jones 2004; Tully, 2005;
Smith 2006) and two current research projects concerning museological factors are
under way (Jones, forthcoming; Tully, forthcoming).
In this analysis the various methodologies currently and recently employed within
community archaeology, and the relationship of the CAPQ to six other community
projects, is examined. To facilitate comparison the seven key components of the
CAPQ methodology were mapped out into a list of specific goals, so that detailed
cross-referencing to the other case studies could be made (Table 1). By highlighting
the factors that concur with the CAPQ, a detailed picture could be built up of the
elements that appear most frequently and which should perhaps be prioritized when
initiating community-focused archaeological research.

The case studies


The six case studies examined here (see Appendix 1 for project summaries) were
chosen because they are some of the most widely cited examples in the literature on
community archaeology and community museology. The case studies were divided
into two groups; the first three consider both archaeological excavation and com-
munity presentation (Shankland, 1996; McDavid, 1997; Field et al., 2000), and
the second three are focused solely on community museology and have not directly
developed out of an excavation (Rosoff 1998; Fienup-Riordan 1999; Herle, 2000).
The decision to include the latter group was made in order to assess whether other
areas of community specialists anthropologists and museum curators have any-
thing to offer archaeologists, and to see what methodological similarities occur,
if any. I have also factored in the desire for spatially distinct examples (Australia,
North America, Egypt and Turkey) in the hope of revealing a wide range of situa-
tions and solutions which will allow me to question the plausibility of a general
community archaeology methodology. To ensure that a balanced perspective
of community archaeology is presented I have also considered numerous other
projects which will be discussed when relevant within the analysis.
In analysing each case study I adopted a structured approach in which key words
and phrases were identified so as to facilitate comparison between each example
(Sowden and Keeves, 1998: 518). The key practices and suggestions were then
compared point by point with the CAPQ methodology. Once the key elements
were identified for all of the case studies, I then examined how many of these were
addressed by the general methodology of the CAPQ, how the excavation versus
museology, and archaeologist versus anthropologist and museum curator, exam-
ples differed; what other factors, if any, they promoted, and how each case study
factored into the general pattern as I uncovered their hidden methodologies.
Each case study was originally placed in an individual table alongside the detailed
point-by-point analysis of the CAPQ methodology. Although only the final, col-
laborated results are evident here (Table 2), it was necessary to annotate compa-
risons where a methodological feature had been fulfilled, but perhaps in a slightly
different manner. This annotation enabled meaningful comparisons to be made
and also allowed for the delineation of a more widely applicable methodology for
community archaeology. I also recorded alternative methodological factors arising
162 GEMMA TULLY

TABLE 1
BREAKDOWN OF THE CAPQ METHODOLOGY (FROM MOSER ET AL., 2002: 229242).

The seven key components of the CAPQ methodology (Moser et al., 2002: 229242). The identified
sub-points are labelled alphabetically with the sub-divisions specifically discussed within the CAPQ
underlined.

1. Communication and collaboration between the archaeological team and local community
representatives at all stages of research
A Continuous two-way flow of dialogue to facilitate full collaboration on interpretation and
presentation.
B Partnerships with local organizations (councils and heritage organizations) to integrate results
into local plans for the future management and presentation of the archaeological resource.
These organizations are likely to know other interest groups and therefore introduce new
community members to the project as well as provide structure and official context for
collaboration.
C Work updates and strategy documents. Regular reports for local organizations and other
community groups informing them of developments, providing structure and an official context for
the project.
These are bilingual, plain language and compiled in collaboration with community members.
D Openness. Keeping no secrets, making sure everyone is informed on all aspects of the
project i.e. open communication (Moser et al., 2002: 231).
Doing all jobs together no matter how small, to build trust and ensure that local people feel
included. Making it clear that the project is interested in the views of all members of the
community.
Keeping in contact and informing community members of work in progress while the
archaeological team is absent.
E Authority and ownership. Putting local people in the role of facilitator, allowing for an active role
in terms of presentation and display.
F Social interaction. Developing friendships to show long-term interest as opposed to pure
business.
This involves addressing issues of cultural difference and visiting the community when no
work is being undertaken.
G Acknowledging difficulties. Realizing that problems and disputes are inevitable, making them
easier to deal with when they occur.
2. Employment and training of local people in all areas of the project
A Helps to maintain the central role of the local community and develop their skills in the
presentation of heritage.
B Provides a continuity of decision-making by maintaining the same team even when the project
archaeologists are absent.
C Benefits employees in terms of future employment through the development of new skills.
D Employees can pass on ideas and knowledge to others.
E Full-time employment rather than part-time employment to maintain the momentum of the
project.
F Training to pass on formal qualifications and informal skills.
3. Public presentation, a vital element in the passing on of information to the wider community
A Communicating the results of work undertaken to show its significance to the region.
B Finding appropriate forms and methods of presentation.
COMMUNITY ARCHAEOLOGY 163

TABLE 1
CONTINUED

The seven key components of the CAPQ methodology (Moser et al., 2002: 229242). The identified
sub-points are labelled alphabetically with the sub-divisions specifically discussed within the CAPQ
underlined.
C Development of heritage facilities telling of the towns recent history, not just focusing on the
past.
D Front-end evaluation involving the community in the choice of themes and formats for
presentation.
E Consideration of recent museological literature/approaches in working with different cultural
groups.
F Preparing the site for public presentation.
G Exhibition strategies providing the community with regular reports and plans to encourage
feedback and involvement.
H Construction of temporary exhibitions while the permanent space is being constructed to
encourage feedback and provide information for local people.
I International connections exchanging knowledge and experience to benefit all parties (e.g.
Quseir and the Petrie Museum of Egyptology, London).
4. Interview and oral history to see how the local people respond to the archaeology and how this
links into traditional ideas of the past
A Providing more diverse cultural interpretations of the evidence and facilitating the construction
of a total life history of the site (Moser et al., 2002: 236).
B Discovery of the community aims for the project and the development of involvement.
C Interview questions. Investigation of significant, appropriate themes and interview techniques
beforehand.
D Analysis to discover local thoughts on the project and their past while maintaining communica-
tion to ensure that the information is being used in the way that the community desires.
5. Educational resources to introduce younger people to the archaeological research results
A Organized system of site visits for school children to build upon knowledge of the local heritage.
B Childrens books to develop pride and imagination in terms of the past.
C Teaching materials for schools (e.g. illustrations, activities).
D Artefact database. The creation of a digital resource to allow wider community access to the
archaeological discoveries and knowledge.
6. Photographic and video archive to create a record of the archaeological work and experiences of
the project for the exhibition centre
A Photographic record. Documentation of collaboration with the local people to complement the
scientific archaeological photographs.
To show the importance of local involvement and to communicate the integration of the
community within the project.
B Video record to show the day-to-day activities of the excavation for display alongside video
footage of community interviews.
7. Community controlled merchandising considering the tourist market and offering quality alternatives
to the typical Pharaonic/other standard souvenirs on offer
A Local decision-making in design, production and sale of souvenirs with the possibility of
enhancing the local economy and sustaining the heritage centre.
B Creation of a project logo and T-shirts in a collaborative effort to promote and establish an
identity for the project.
164 GEMMA TULLY

TABLE 2
A COMPARISON OF THE METHODOLOGICAL COMPONENTS CONCURRING WITH THE CAPQ

Category Individual Cuddie Levi Jordon atalhyk NMAI Yupik Torres


(see Table 1 points Springs Plantation Strait
for full text covered by
version) each case
study in
comparison
with the
CAPQ
1. Collaboration A
B

C

D


E
F

G
2. Employment A
B
C
D
E
F
3. Presentation A
B
C
D
E
F
G
H
I
4. Interview A
B
C
D
COMMUNITY ARCHAEOLOGY 165

TABLE 2
CONTINUED

Category Individual Cuddie Levi Jordon atalhyk NMAI Yupik Torres


(see Table 1 points Springs Plantation Strait
for full text covered by
version) each case
study in
comparison
with the
CAPQ
5. Education A
B
C
D
6. Media Archive A

B
7. Merchandising A
B
Total number of 22 17 11 13 21 22
methodological
points covered
out of 40
Total number 7 5 4 5 6 4
of categories
covered or
partially covered
out of 7

from the case studies that were not raised in relation to the CAPQ methodology;
these will be discussed later.

Analysis
Looking at the cross case study comparison data (Table 2) we can see that the
Cuddie Springs example is the only one to meet elements of the CAPQ criteria from
all seven categories. It also covers 22 of the 40 individual CAPQ methodological
points proposed. The Torres Strait example also addresses 22 of the methodological
points, however they all fall within the remit of only four categories. The Yupik
case study covers 21 points and six categories, followed by the Levi Jordan and
National Museum of the American Indian (NMAI) examples both of which
consider five of the seven categories and cover 17 and 13 points respectively. atal-
hyk discusses elements relevant to four of the categories and 11 of the general
points.
It is unsurprising that the Cuddie Springs example is most consistent with the
CAPQ when considered on a general level, as it provided elements of background
for the CAPQ methodologies development (Moser et al., 2002: 223). The Yupik
and Torres Strait Islander examples are, however, extremely focused. They may not
166 GEMMA TULLY

include all categories, as they are purely community museology projects, but they
illustrate the importance of thorough collaboration, interviews and oral history,
visual archives and of course public presentation for successful projects. The dis-
covery that Shanklands discussion of atalhyk covers the least number of points
when compared with the CAPQ methodology is also predictable as the project
focused on scientific analysis rather than community involvement and is an anthro-
pological study of the archaeology/community relations rather than a programme
of collaboration itself. However, although when looked at statistically the atal-
hyk project scores low, the qualitative analysis did reveal that many of the
community archaeology methodological principles were considered, if not, as yet,
put into practice. For example Ian Hodder (1996: 6), in his introduction to the site,
promotes the sensitivity of context, the capability of redefinition from different
perspectives and suggests that contextuality leads to multi-vocality, interactivity
and reflexivity. Hodder believes that this can be achieved by looking at the impact
of the archaeological work on the local community, a theory he put to the test
through the anthropological work of David Shankland (1996). However, he also
encourages the locals to respond to and interact with the project to create multiple
interpretations of atalhyk in the future (Hodder, 1996: 7). Shankland did in fact
glean a great deal of information from the inhabitants of Kkky in terms of their
oral histories and cosmologies (Shankland, 1996: 6; see also 1999: 139157). These
perceptions would certainly add a different perspective to traditional archaeological
views and could be incorporated, perhaps alongside the perspectives of other
interest groups, such as the Mother Goddess cult, through the site interpretation
in the heritage centre, to reveal its plethora of meanings. Trust was another feature
highlighted. However, Shankland feels that this had not as yet built up between the
communities and the archaeologists because openness (see Table 1, category 1,
C and D) and communication surrounding the project were not actively promoted.
It is nonetheless a key proposal for the future, alongside the greater incorporation
of the community within the project, to create a more sensitive and locally relevant
means of excavation and presentation (Shankland, 1996: 910).
By studying the similarities of the six case studies as a whole, with the general
methodological points identified from the CAPQ, it became clear that interviews
and oral history, as well as communication and collaboration, are the areas of most
concern to community projects. These two categories have a 75% (interviews and
oral histories category 4) and 65% (communication and collaboration category
1) coverage in terms of the total possible parallels with the CAPQ. The closest con-
tender is public presentation at 37%, followed by photographic and video archiving
at 33%, employment and training at 28%, community controlled merchandising at
17% and finally educational resources at 13%.
Interviews and oral histories are the main way in which the ideologies and
perspectives of the communities involved can be expressed within the process of
collaboration. They are the starting point for any community project, providing
the basis from which the remaining six categories can emerge. Their high level of
representation shows that these founding methodological principles for community
archaeology/museology have, for some time, been firmly established in practice
and are relevant, especially in terms of collaboration and communication, to all
COMMUNITY ARCHAEOLOGY 167

contexts. The other categories are perhaps under-represented as they are more con-
text specific and reflect a significant stage of development within the collaborative
process that may not have been brought to the attention of all of these works. How-
ever, all of the CAPQs methodological categories are represented by one or more of
the case studies. This supports the applicability of these practices within community
projects but also the fact that a more generalized methodology needs to be proposed
so that a wider range of schemes realize the full potential for their research.
Public presentation is the next logical step, representing the collaborative findings
to the community/wider audience, explaining the categories place in third position.
It was, however, a surprise to discover that category 5, educational resources, was
the least identified at only 13%. The fact that the two examples that did discuss
this topic were Cuddie Springs (Field et al., 2000) and the Levi Jordan project
(McDavid, 1997), led by and focusing on archaeology, was also unexpected,
as although excavation is concerned with education we traditionally consider the
museum as the dominant educational realm (e.g. Hooper-Greenhill, 1994; Roberts,
1997; Hein, 1998; Falk and Dierking, 2000). Although the Levi Jordan project does
concentrate on presenting the site, explaining its educational objectives, the fact
that none of the case studies led by curators (Rosoff, 1998; Herle, 2000), or focused
on community museology (Fienup-Riordan, 1999), stated educational aims was
unforeseen. This was coupled with the fact that the communities from all of the case
studies discussed, as with almost all of the other relevant literature, stress the impor-
tance of the past not only for the education of their youth but for the revivification
of their entire culture. Andy Paukan, the Mayor of St Marys, Alaska says, our work
will make it easier to prepare teaching material about our culture for our younger
generations, our children, our grandchildren, to our peers, even to our parents and
grandparents. With this work our roots and culture will come closer to us (cited
by Fienup-Riordan in her follow-up work, 2003: 29). Fienup-Riordan emphasizes
this point and also talks about the Seattle Art Museum establishing educational
programmes and links with the children at the Toksook school (1999: 352), but
nonetheless, neither she nor the other museum case studies clearly propose educa-
tional schemes. However, this may be misrepresentative of the general pattern,
as education is a priority in many of the other museological texts studied (e.g.
Nightingale and Swallow, 2003: 60; Stapf, 2004).
Having considered the major categories, we now turn to the leading individual
methodological points which again arise from categories 1 and 4. Social interaction
and the acknowledgement of difficulties (category 1, F and G), as well as the use of
interviews and oral histories to provide more diverse cultural interpretations of
the evidence and facilitate the construction of a total life history of the site (Moser
et al., 2002: 236) (category 4, A), are the only areas discussed by each of the case
studies. These two categories also provide numerous other points which are con-
sidered by almost all of the projects chosen for study (Table 2). Categories 3 (public
presentation) and 5 (educational resources) were the only two areas that included
sub-points that remained unconsidered by any of the six examples. Two of these
points emerged from category 3: the use of the latest museological literature (point
E), and temporary exhibitions in terms of waiting for permanent space to be con-
structed (point H). Two points were also highlighted in category 5: the production
of childrens books to develop pride and imagination in terms of the past (point B),
168 GEMMA TULLY

and an artefact database to allow wider community access to the archaeological


discoveries and knowledge through a digital resource (point D).
In terms of the points discussed by all of the case studies, social interaction and
the acknowledgement of difficulties were bound to arise as collaboration between
different groups, no matter how considerate each party is to the others sensitivities,
is inevitably going to be fraught with contentions. Different cultural priorities are
problematic enough, but when mixed with limited time and finances, as well as the
possibility of issues surrounding the location of displays, repatriation and reburial
(see Swindler et al., 1997), it is unsurprising that acceptance and flexibility were dis-
cussed again and again (Shankland, 1996: 355; Rosoff, 1998: 40; Fienup-Riordan,
1999: 356; McDavid, 1997: 115; Field et al., 2000: 43; Herle, 2000: 261). The
significance of interviews and oral histories has already been discussed above;
however, those points lacking representation provide some interesting issues for
comment. Although the CAPQ promotes the use of the latest museological ideas
(Table 1, category 3, point E) they may be inappropriate to local contexts. This was
found to be the case within Quseir itself where the emphasis on didactic displays
and audio-visual technology was little suited to the interests of local people. While
the methodological point should not be rejected, we need to think of it more as a
starting point for ideas, which will most likely be altered when discussed with local
communities.
In terms of the use of temporary exhibitions, we did in fact see this with the
Yupik example. However, this was in a very different context as the exhibition was
travelling rather than waiting for a permanent residence as proposed in Quseir.
Nonetheless, temporary exhibitions are still a valid methodological consideration
although not present in the case studies.
As discussed above, educational resources were a highly neglected feature. Chil-
drens books are a very effective way of disseminating knowledge to community
members, tourists or those with a general interest in the area, and their potential for
success has been proven elsewhere, e.g. the educational programme for the Varsa
museum, Stockholm, Sweden (see Stapf, 2004). Because stories and oral histories
are an important means of communication in many cultures (Schmidt and Patter-
son, 1995; Anyon et al., 1997; Conaty, 2003: 234) and will appeal to both local
communities and tourist groups, they are an educational feature worth promoting.
Artefact databases, preferably on-line, are also an effective way of communicating
with different audiences and age groups. They provide access to anyone with an
interest, from any part of the globe, developing education and opening up further
the possibilities for collaboration. Perhaps more importantly, although they are no
substitute for the real thing, they can provide a form of visual repatriation for those
communities who do not have access to much of their cultural heritage, enhancing
feelings of authority and ownership (Herle, 2000: 267).
Other than the expected focus on public presentation by the museologists
(Table 2, category 3), and therefore a greater concentration on the area of photo-
graphic and video archiving (category 6), alongside a more pronounced focus on
employment and training from the community archaeology projects (category 2),
no discernable pattern of difference between the approaches exists. The only
unexpected factor is that none of the community museology projects fully consider
COMMUNITY ARCHAEOLOGY 169

educational resources when these are explicitly promoted in two of the community
archaeology projects (McDavid, 1997; Field et al., 2000). Again, no discernible
differences could be found between the ways in which the anthropologists, archae-
ologists and curators carried out collaborative work, other than that the curators,
as predicted, were focused on public presentation.
The lack of any major differences between the community archaeology and
community museology approaches, other than those factors discussed above, can
perhaps be explained by the fact that ideas of best practice for these kinds of
collaborative or community-based projects have already begun to emerge. Although
as yet no official methodology has been published for collaborative approaches
that deal with the representation of the past, it is clear that the principles of this kind
of work naturally lend themselves to a certain modus operandi. This is significant
because it promotes the existence of a strong underlying methodological baseline
which can be elaborated upon using the work of the CAPQ and other research, into
a more general approach. This will not only provide greater authority and owner-
ship for the communities involved but bring about the improvement of archaeolo-
gical/museological research. Once this methodology is communicated to the wider
discipline, the sub-field will gain the respect, recognition and more comprehensive
uptake that it needs to fulfil the postcolonial intellectual climate of archaeology
and museum studies today. Most importantly, it is only when the wider academic
community fully supports collaboration that communities with whom partnerships
have been formed thus far, and those yet to occur, will fully begin to benefit. More
holistic support will help further promote undervalued perspectives (Layton, 1989;
Schmidt and Patterson, 1995: 10; Wylie, 1995: 271) and encourage wider reaching
community cohesion.

Further factors for methodological consideration not arising from the


CAPQ
The CAPQ methodology encompassed the majority of practical points recom-
mended for conducting community work within the case study analysis. However,
further factors arose from the study of numerous other community archaeology
projects that were not considered within the Quseir methodology. These should be
incorporated into a more general archaeological methodology.
Being an integral part of the CAPQs background research it was unsurprising
that both the Cuddie Springs and Levi Jordan examples provided numerous under-
lying comparative methodological factors supporting my belief in the verisimilitude
of academic text analysis. However, even they proposed some further elements that
were not accommodated by the Quseir scheme. In terms of the work at Cuddie
Springs, the most important implied methodological suggestion was that of collab-
oration between archaeologists and locals in terms of the publication of academic
works about the site (Field et al., 2000: 46). As it is difficult, even today, for indige-
nous, postcolonial and non-academic communities to put across their perspectives
to the Western academic world, this co-authorship is extremely important in
addressing the unidirectional flow of knowledge production (see also Aboriginal
contributions to Rose, 1996; Native American contributions to Swindler et al.,
1997) and in sharing success (Harrison, 2001: 103). This by no means implies
170 GEMMA TULLY

that individuals or community groups are incapable of independent promotion (see


Coffey, 1979; Coffey, Ansara and Guyatt, 1993; Crawford, 1993); however, com-
munity archaeologists can also act as facilitators for the wider dissemination of
local voices (see Nuestro Maize exhibition, cited in Shelton, 2003: 185). Another
factor that became evident from Fields interviews (1997) was the stress placed on
the ability of the archaeologists to bring back our culture to us (cited in Field et al.,
2000: 42) because we have lost our link with the past (ibid.: 39). The Aboriginal
populace, like the North American Indians (see Swindler et al., 1997), feel especially
robbed of their past and want to re-engage people with this element of their identi-
ties. Although not stated as a direct methodological aim by the CAPQ, community
members in Quseir voiced similar hopes in terms of local identity: this [the excava-
tion and heritage centre] will give a unity to the whole society (Int.3.28. Glazier,
2003: 128). For many of the nations where community archaeology is undertaken,
a consideration of the role that community archaeology can play in the revivifica-
tion of the past for the present population is not an outlandish proposal. Finally, in
the Australian case study locals expressed their desire for community members to
play a role in conveying information to visitors at both the site and museum loca-
tions (Field et al., 2000: 45). This could be achieved through volunteers or employ-
ment, and although the language barrier would make this difficult in many cases,
The Arts of the Sikh Kingdoms exhibition at the Victoria and Albert Museum in
1999 demonstrated the success of such an approach (Nightingale and Swallow,
2003). Local members of the Sikh community manned the exhibit, explaining and
clarifying for non-Sikh visitors (ibid.: 60). This not only provided a real stake in the
museum for those involved but also further enhanced intercultural understandings
as groups that would not normally mix were brought together. This was also a dis-
tinct feature of the CAPQ while the excavations were being carried out, as it was
exclusively locals who conveyed information to visitors.
The Levi Jordan example revealed that the role of projects in the reduction of
social divisions is feasible for many modern communities, where, like Brazoria
County, relations of power, migration and enforced mixing have created tension
and intolerance. Self-reflexivity in analysis was also an important factor promoted,
underlying all post-processual work (see Hodder, 1996: 6), for the archaeologists
as well as others involved with the project to ensure that a consideration of bias
was included at all levels (McDavid 1997: 117). This is especially important in
terms of overcoming the negative views that many non-Western communities have
of archaeologists: you have to realise that people will tell you what they think you
want to hear (ibid.: 121). The local black population was so used to not being
listened to that the archaeologists therefore needed to state their bias, and be totally
open and honest, in order to get a meaningful reply and earn respect. As Alan
Downer (1997: 33) proposes, we have to prove ourselves with our words and our
actions if we are to be accepted and achieve worthwhile community collaboration.
Feasibility of the original community archaeology research aims was also an
important element for consideration. Project members had to question the likeli-
hood of the project coming to fruition and consider the extent to which local people
were interested in establishing an equally representational museum or whether it
was predominantly the archaeologists personal desire pushing the project forward.
COMMUNITY ARCHAEOLOGY 171

The Levi Jordan and Quseir community projects are quite similar in this sense, as
both communities seemed to take a keen interest in the proposition of a community
museum. However, both research teams began to re-evaluate whether this was the
best way of presenting the past. Therefore an acceptance of the fact that a commu-
nity archaeology project may have to significantly revise its original aims should be
incorporated into a general methodology. This factor of acceptance is frequently
revisited within the community archaeology literature and is clearly of method-
ological significance. Extending beyond an acknowledgement that all community
aims may not be fulfilled, it also incorporates an acceptance of community beliefs at
face value and a sense of faith that archaeologists and local populations can work
together effectively despite what may appear to be axiomatic differences (Swindler
et al., 1997: 18).
Another important factor highlighted by the Levi Jordan example was the
necessity of collaboration, as proposed by the CAPQ (Table 1, category 1), at every
stage of work. During the excavation a comment to a local newspaper from the site
director, who had not thoroughly consulted either the black or white communities,
put the project in jeopardy as it offended both parties (McDavid, 1997: 126127).
This kind of complication could have been easily avoided if the level of collabora-
tion, focused purely on presenting the site, had been more thoroughly planned and
encompassed the project fully from the pre-excavation to post-presentation stage.
Ideas arising from Shanklands (1996) discussion of atalhyk are expressed
more in terms of what anthropologists can offer collaborative projects than in terms
of what archaeology can gain from such endeavours (see also Friesen, 2002).
Although this anthropological distinction was not apparent within the case study
analysis, other elements of Shanklands work reveal the positive role anthropolo-
gists can play within a community-based project. This is not only because of the
vast amount of data that can be gleaned from social anthropology but also because
anthropologists are specifically trained to work with other cultures and community
groups. By learning the language and social codes, feelings of affinity and trust
are enhanced, elements that would greatly benefit all community archaeology pro-
jects (Shankland, 1996: 6). Shankland also promotes that the archaeologists live
amongst the community that they are trying to incorporate, rather then isolating
themselves in dig houses (see also Clarke, 2002: 252). This works well in many
British and American community archaeology projects where the professionals
involved often work and live in the area (e.g. Leicestershire County Council, 2006).
However, archaeologists are clearly capable of carrying out such live in projects in
away from home contexts as demonstrated by the success of Annie Clarkes work
on Groote Eylandt (Clarke, 2002: 249264). Although this is not always possible
due to cost, availability of accommodation and other factors, it still deserves con-
sideration. In Quseir for example, the excavation team camped away from the town
in the desert, and today the community archaeologists stay in a hotel outside of the
town. Although these divisions were deemed necessary for a number of the reasons
discussed above, this isolation is a factor that numerous community members
have discussed with me during my time in Quseir, suggesting that our continuous
presence in the town would create a stronger bond with the community.
172 GEMMA TULLY

atalhyk also offers an example, although not formally discussed in the text,
of the way in which archaeological sites can become truly multi-vocal. Not only
does atalhyk provide the opportunity to amalgamate the ideas of both the
archaeologists and the local community at Kkky but to extend this multi-
vocality to other interest groups who, although they may not be connected to the
site spatially, feel a strong spiritual or academic connection. Admittedly, it would
be problematic to incorporate the views of all who wanted to have a voice on the
site; however, such attempts would make the project truer to its post-modern,
post-processual goals.
The case study of the National Museum of the American Indian proved very
useful in terms of methodological considerations for the implementation of cultural
protocols and concepts of traditional care for both human remains and objects
(Rosoff, 1998: 3335). Respect for the different ways in which cultural groups
view the sacredness, correct treatment and display of objects is vital if community
archaeologists, anthropologists and curators want to work successfully with such
populations, develop mutual trust and be treated with courtesy in return (Kreps,
1998: 3). Within this, the fluidity of collaboration also needs to be considered.
Opinions will change on a case-by-case basis and we must not assume that all
Native American or Aboriginal populations treat their dead, for example, in the
same manner. Repatriation, where appropriate, also falls within this bracket,
showing a great deal of good will from museum institutions and the growth of
respect for such community requests, as collaboration allows us to understand why
the return of artefacts is so important.
The salient point taken from the Yupik example relates to the complexities of
collaborative presentation. Effective involvement of local communities in all areas
of exhibition development and display may be practical on a small scale and at a
local level; however, we need to be more aware of the bureaucracy (Nicks, 2003:
23) and some of the deeply ingrained conventional voices that are unwilling to let
go of their authority in the older national and international institutions (Fienup-
Riordan, 1999: 354). It is not wrong for different museums to have different agen-
das, but as major museums have large teams of educators, designers and curatorial
staff it is unsurprising that community messages often get lost. This is especially the
case in a number of institutions that only take collaboration to mean community
involvement in the final decision-making of display (ibid.: 340; Kelly and Gordon,
2002). This was not how Stephen Weil (1997, cited in Fienup-Riordan, 1999: 353)
envisioned the new museology, which places communities in charge, telling the
curators what things they want done and why, and seeing them put into action (see
also Clifford, 1991: 224; Ames, 1992: 54). Accepting the fact that museums are
limited by space, time and resources (Herle, 2000: 259), it is also important to
acknowledge the extent to which architectural and design/decorative factors such
as space, lighting, wall colour, object arrangement and display location affect the
knowledge conveyed. By changing the exhibitionary setting, new stories can be
told and perceptions altered. The assumption that these factors do not have a trans-
formative effect on the meaning displays generate is incorrect and needs to be
addressed in future community museology methodology, as without collaboration
at all levels, not only is respect lost but the communities authorship is removed and
COMMUNITY ARCHAEOLOGY 173

ownership cut away (Fienup-Riordan, 1999: 356). There are, of course, exceptions
to the rule. Both the curators and the designers worked with the numerous com-
munities involved in the 1994 re-creation of the Horniman Museums African
exhibition (Shelton, 2003: 186188); however, it is a general problem that needs
to be addressed. Of course with such a change in practice we need to be careful
not to exclude traditional museum audiences (Phillips, 2003: 165). Nevertheless, a
balance can be found and exhibitions such as the Torres Strait Islanders and others
(see Nightingale and Swallow, 2003) reveal how often the most successful
exhibitions, for all involved, are those that come about through more inclusive
collaboration, sharing and relinquishing some of the museums power (ibid.: 68).
The other vital point arising from the Yupik example was that of visual repatri-
ation. Where the actual return of items is not possible they can often be loaned,
photographed or put on databases. Although practitioners such as Trudy Nicks
(2003: 24) feel that this is a starting point and not a solution, the process at least
makes objects available, allowing them to continue to act as a source of inspiration
and encourage the re-emergence of local knowledge. In her follow-up work to the
Yupik exhibition, Ann Fienup-Riordan (2003: 2841) turns this visual repatriation
on its head by taking a group of Yupik elders to Berlin to visit the Ethnographic
Museum. There they spent a number of weeks handling and discussing the 7,000
Alaskan objects in the museums care. Although not possible in most cases (see also
Herle, 2003: 194207), the trip not only developed the museums understanding of
its collection but allowed the Alaskan culture as a whole to re-own the knowledge
and experiences that the objects embodied at a level beyond anything possible from
looking at images or from the process of limited museum loans (ibid.: 39).
The Cambridge exhibition of the Torres Strait Islanders had many obstacles to
overcome in terms of time, distance and transferability of meaning. The enormity
of these limitations pushed Anita Herle and her team to think very carefully about
their collaborative strategies. Although Herle (2000: 271) admits that a museum
exhibition cannot fully encompass all the stories and complicated negotiations
involved in its development, the exhibition was a clear success. Covering the major-
ity of the points proposed by the CAPQ methodology, as well as proposing further
elements for consideration, it is an important example of how the museum field
site can become a place for encounter and creative dialogue, for the production as
well as dissemination of anthropological knowledge (ibid.: 271). When compared
with the Yupik example it demonstrates how the effective facilitation of local com-
munities in the presentation and development of knowledge about their past and
present culture can be achieved if museum officials and anthropologists truly follow
the mission statement of collaborative practice. In terms of further contributions
to a community archaeology methodology, one of the most useful points raised
was the consideration and discussion of previous encounters with the Island com-
munities. As the exhibition was focused on the 1898 Cambridge expedition this was
unsurprising and highly necessary. However, numerous archaeological excavations
and anthropological projects are re-visitations, often to follow up earlier work. At
Quseir, for example, the archaeological site was known, in Western terms, since
at least the visit of explorer James Bruce in 1769 (Bruce, 1790: 192) and was first
excavated by an American team in the 1970s (see Whitcomb and Johnson, 1979,
174 GEMMA TULLY

1982). The 1970s work is remembered by numerous local people, and hundreds of
interviews intertwined the oral history with the archaeological project (Glazier,
2003). Developing past connections within current work could be a useful way of
generating interest if living relatives or not so distant ancestors were involved. This
would perhaps reveal how local people had the knowledge and power previously to
speak about their past, empowering resident populations today, as well as showing
that the modern approach has changed, aiming to involve local perceptions more
holistically.
Summative evaluation by the 30 Torres Strait Islanders, who came across to
view the Cambridge exhibition, and by other visitors was also a useful feature that
should be included in the public presentation component of a general methodology.
Obviously, community members will not always be able to make visits, depending
on distance, funding and so on. However, as Herle (2000: 269) suggests, and as is
evident from the Yupik example (Fienup-Riordan, 1999), the most valuable and
informative experiences have involved interactions with Islanders within the exhi-
bition space. Summative evaluation in any form is useful in the exhibition context,
whether by local community members or by external visitors, to see how effectively
the collaborative process is communicated in display (see Kelly and Gordon, 2002:
15860; Conaty, 2003: 237; Nightingale and Swallow, 2003: 61). This is an impor-
tant feature because the effect of collaborative display on audiences is as yet little
studied (Phillips, 2003: 167). Summative evaluation should therefore be promoted
wherever possible as a means of evaluating not only whether collaboration has
succeeded in putting the right message across but also to assess the long-term impact
of collaborative display on the process of mutual learning.

Re-evaluating the status of education


Based on this research and contributions from the CAPQ, I would propose addi-
tional variables for inclusion in a general community archaeology methodology.
As discussed above, educational resources are a highly neglected but nonetheless
vital resource for both native and non-native populations. I therefore believe that
not only should there be a greater focus on lifelong learning (see Delors, 1996;
OECD, 1996; Middleton, 1998; Jarvis, 2004), with workshops and activities (see
Nightingale and Swallow, 2003) encouraging participation from all areas of the
community, not just from the young, but also that more imaginative and culturally
appropriate methods beyond oral histories, such as colloquial academic texts (see
Rose, 1996) and arts and crafts should be promoted (Tully 2005). As Colin Pardoe
states, time spent in education and exchange of views is a good investment if it
is a two way process leading to mutual respect and a recognition of different
perspectives (1992: 138). By incorporating these different forms of expression I
believe projects could significantly enhance their potential for mutual learning.

Employment and training


Employment and training are additional features that also need consideration.
Ferguson and colleagues (1997: 247) promote tribally employed archaeologists
acting as cultural brokers alongside the employment of native people by the
archaeological teams to enhance the equality of projects as well as benefit both sides
COMMUNITY ARCHAEOLOGY 175

in terms of skills acquired. Obviously the employment of archaeologists by com-


munities has to be initiated from the bottom up (see McNiven and Russell, 1997),
and may not be relevant or possible in all contexts. However, as seen through
Andrew Crosbys community work in Fiji (2002: 363378), Friesens experiences
in Arctic Canada (2002: 315329), and Samuels and Daughertys role at Ozette,
Washington State, USA (1991), this equalization of roles can also be achieved
through the invitation, rather than employment, of archaeologists by local groups.
Certified archaeology and cultural heritage training programmes have also been
initiated in the state of Victoria, Australia by the Aboriginal Community Heritage
Investigations Program (ACHIP). ACHIP itself developed through the community
framework and its primary aim is to promote equal outcomes through training
and experiential opportunities for individuals from the local Aboriginal commu-
nities, many of whom have taken an active role in the initiation of development
courses (Russell, 2004: 2328). These relationships, paid or unpaid, certified or
not, are beginning to reveal the slow recovery of the profile of archaeology within
indigenous communities, and are providing these communities with greater means
of control over research projects, as well as acting as a forum of promotion for
disenfranchised groups by enhancing their political, economic or cultural status.
If employment and training are being encouraged within a collaborative project
then the development of keeping places, cultural centres and community
museums, set up and run by the communities themselves, is a real possibility. The
establishment of such institutions can be used for furthering employment and
training, education, research, and meeting places, as well as centres for the exhibi-
tion, care and repatriation of objects (Kelly and Gordon, 2002: 164). This may seem
like a difficult task as community practitioners may assume that museum collecting
and preservation is purely a Western practice. However, as Christina Kreps points
out, nearly all cultures keep objects of special value and meaning, and may have
developed elaborate structures for storing and displaying them as well as methods
for care and preservation (2003: 1). This perhaps explains why collaboration is so
successful and why the development of such centres may not be as alien or unwel-
come as we might initially assume. Although outside of Western communities this is
perhaps most relevant to Australian Aboriginal and Native American communities,
it is a concept that wholeheartedly returns power and knowledge, helping to keep
cultures alive, and could be transported to numerous contexts where willingness
is shown, making it a worthy addition to the methodology.
Finally, an explicit statement of goals as well as limitations in terms of funding,
time and sustainability, as known at the initiation of a project, should be made
widely available (Harrison, 2001: 234). This would be a positive additional factor
ensuring that both the archaeological/museological team and the community
members are fully aware of the situation and may therefore be more accepting when
and if issues arise.

Methods for community archaeology


Having identified the main points advocated for successful community archaeology/
museology projects that are not articulated by the CAPQ model, I shall now
incorporate them into my proposed collaborative methodology (Table 3). This is
176 GEMMA TULLY

TABLE 3
PROPOSED GENERAL COMMUNITY ARCHAEOLOGY METHODOLOGY

The seven key components remain consistent with the CAPQ methodology (Moser et al., 2002:
229242). Additions and alterations are highlighted in italics for comparison with Table 1.
1. Communication and collaboration between the archaeological/ museological team and the local
community at all stages of research
A Continuous two-way flow of dialogue to facilitate interpretation and presentation
acknowledging the fact that opinions are fluid and changing both within communities and between
different interest groups.
B Partnerships with local organizations (councils and heritage organizations) to integrate results
into local plans for the future management and presentation of the archaeological resource.
These organizations are likely to know other interest groups and therefore introduce new
community members to the project.
C Work updates and strategy documents. Regular reports for local organizations and other
community groups informing them of developments, providing structure and an official context for
the project.
These are bilingual, plain language and compiled in collaboration with community members.
D Openness. Keeping no secrets, making sure everyone is informed on all aspects of the project,
including the projects initial goals and limitations, to develop a greater understanding when/if
proposed or requested elements of a project cannot be achieved, i.e. open communication
(Moser et al, 2002: 231).
Doing all jobs together no matter how small, to build trust and ensure that local people feel
included. Making it clear that the project is interested in the views of all members of the
community.
Attempting to learn the local language and living within the community to enhance levels of
equality and further develop trust.
Keeping in contact and informing community members of work in progress while the
archaeological team is absent.
E Authority and ownership. Putting local people in the role of facilitator, allowing for a full say in
terms of presentation and display.
F Social interaction. Developing friendships to show long-term interest as opposed to pure
business.
This involves addressing issues of cultural difference and visiting the community when no
work is being undertaken, the acceptance by research teams of community beliefs at face
value and willingness from all parties to compromise.
G Acknowledging difficulties and considering feasibility. Realizing that problems and disputes are
inevitable and that all goals may not come to fruition making such problems easier to deal with
when they do occur.
H Acknowledging successes and sharing them equally.
I Acknowledging bias by maintaining self reflexivity at all times.
J Academic publications involving both archaeologists/researchers and local community members
to acknowledge and further promote the authority of local perspectives.
2. Employment, training and volunteering of local people in all areas of the project
A Helps maintain the central role of the local community and develop their skills.
B Provides a continuity of decision-making by maintaining the same team even when the project
archaeologists are absent.
C Volunteering to allow for the involvement of community members in diverse areas of the project
which may not have the funds for employment.
COMMUNITY ARCHAEOLOGY 177

TABLE 3
CONTINUED

The seven key components remain consistent with the CAPQ methodology (Moser et al., 2002:
229242). Additions and alterations are highlighted in italics for comparison with Table 1.

D Benefits employees and volunteers in terms of future employment through the development of
new skills.
E Employees and volunteers can pass on ideas and knowledge to others.
F Full-time employment rather than part-time to maintain the momentum of the project and show
commitment.
G Training to pass on formal qualifications and informal skills.
H Community members as site and/or museum guides maintaining their control and authority
over the heritage and encouraging different cultural groups to interact.
I Community employed or invited archaeologists acting as cultural brokers to enhance the
equality of the collaboration and to develop the authority and power of local groups in the wider
national and global arena.
3. Public presentation, a vital element in the passing on of information to the wider community and
other non-indigenous/ non-community members
A Communicating the results of work undertaken to show its significance to the region.
B Finding appropriate forms and methods of presentation and traditional care.
Incorporating bilingual display text where requested.
C Development of a heritage centre which ties together current traditions/recent history, rather
than focusing purely on the past.
D Front end evaluation involving the community in the choice of themes and formats for
presentation.
E Consideration of the recent museological approaches in working with different cultural
groups as a starting point for exhibition development but an acceptance that it may not suit the
requirements of the local community.
Training up museum designers and educators, as well as curators, to ensure full museum
involvement in the collaborative display process.
F Preparing the site for public presentation.
G Exhibition strategies. Providing the community with regular reports and plans to encourage
feedback and involvement.
H The construction of temporary exhibitions while the permanent space is being constructed, to
encourage feedback and provide information for local people OR where permanent display is not
possible (museum loans to communities etc.).
I International connections exchanging knowledge and experience to benefit all parties (e.g.
Quseir and the Petrie Museum of Egyptology, London).
J Summative evaluation to discover how effectively the museum/heritage centre communicates its
intended message to both the community involved and outside visitors.
4. Interview and oral history to see how local people respond to the archaeological excavation (if
applicable), and the objects discovered/being presented to see how this links into the communities
traditional ideas about the past
A Providing more diverse cultural interpretations of the evidence and facilitating the construction
of a total life history of the site.
B Discovery of the community aims for the project and the development of involvement.
178 GEMMA TULLY

TABLE 3
CONTINUED

The seven key components remain consistent with the CAPQ methodology (Moser et al., 2002:
229242). Additions and alterations are highlighted in italics for comparison with Table 1.

Discussions concerning previous encounters with archaeologists/anthropologists in the area,


allowing for connections to be made between the past and present, helping reduce any
negative views towards researchers that may have been created by previous projects.
C Interview questions. Investigation of significant, appropriate themes and interview techniques
before hand.
Investigation of the appropriate methods for treating human remains and objects before work
begins.
D Analysis to discover local thoughts on the project and their past while maintaining
communication to ensure that the information is being used in the way that the community desires.
5. Educational resources to introduce people from all generations to the cultural heritage
A Site visits for school children to build upon knowledge of the local heritage.
B Childrens books to develop their imagination in terms of the past and to help fund projects/
heritage centres.
C Culturally appropriate teaching materials for schools.
D Artefact database. The creation of digital resources to allow wider community access to the
archaeological discoveries and knowledge.
E Learning for all promoted through site and museum visits, workshops, seminars and other
activities for both the community and visitors.
This can be through more imaginative and culturally relevant means beyond the traditional
didactic approach, to encourage the involvement of wider sections of the community.
6. Photographic and video archive to create a record of the archaeological work and experiences of
the project, to enhance the visual element of local authority and knowledge production in site
interpretation and for the development of exhibition centres.
A Photographic record. Documentation of collaboration with the local people to compliment the
scientific archaeological photographs and to act as something tangible to return to the community
to enhance local empowerment and pride in their role through photographic ownership.
To show the importance of local involvement and to communicate the integration of the
community within the project.
B Video record to show the day-to-day activities of the excavation alongside video footage of
community interviews.
7. Community controlled merchandising considering the tourist market ( where applicable) and offering
quality alternatives to the typical, stereotyped souvenirs on offer.
A Local decision making in design, production and sale of souvenirs with the possibility of
enhancing the local economy and sustaining the heritage centre.
B Creation of a project logo and T-shirts in a collaborative effort to promote and establish an
identity for the project and to enhance local involvement.

based upon the structure and points of the CAPQ (Table 1), as the research thus far
clearly illustrates its relevance. However, I will adapt the language and add extra
features to propose a less context-specific framework for collaborative practice.
Obviously I am not suggesting that this is an explicit formula to be followed
unconditionally, however I hope that it will provide a wider range of options for
COMMUNITY ARCHAEOLOGY 179

those initiating community projects in helping to create context-specific but more


encompassing work.

Conclusion
It is clear that an instinctive underlying system is already in place for the practice
of community archaeology. However, a more focused and explicit methodology is
required in order that this kind of research is more effectively communicated to
the wider academic archaeological realm. This entails grounding the discussion
within the scientific framework within which the foundations of archaeology still
lie. As Alison Wylie states (1995: 271), the methods of systematic empirical inquiry
developed by western science figure as some of the most effective tools available for
building accounts of the world we live in natural, social, historical and, crucially,
for understanding, at a second order, reflexive level the limits of these accounts,
which in this case can be put to effective use by combining the epistemological views
of the discipline with the more colloquial requirements of the source communities.
Only when both of these elements combine can we fully achieve the collaborative
goal in a means that will be recognized and adopted by these two distinct spheres.
Set out here (Table 3) we see one approach through which this can be achieved in
a mutually satisfactory way by drawing on various aspects of successful community
archaeology/museology projects throughout the world. However, as cultures are
constructed and therefore eternally open to negotiation (Kreps, 2003: 159), this
means that the collaborative methodology needs to be flexible. Therefore, the
methodology proposed here will need to be frequently re-evaluated as the means
and terms for community archaeology change, allowing for a fuller picture of the
source communities and for the increased potential of archaeological research to
continually re-emerge.

Appendix 1. Background to the six case studies and their justification


for analysis.

1. AUSTRALIA Coming back: Aborigines and archaeologists at Cuddie Springs, Judith Field
(archaeologist) et al., 2000
The community archaeology project at Cuddie Springs, situated just outside the small town of
Brewarrina in western New South Wales, Australia, is just one example of many successful
collaborative projects between archaeologists and Aborigines in Australia (e.g. Davidson et al., 1995;
Pardoe, 1990, 1992). In this particular case the collaborative approach grew out of the original
scientific aims which enforced consultation with the Brewarrina Local Aboriginal Land Council (BLALC)
in the process of obtaining an excavation permit (Field et al., 2000: 35). Building on archaeological
works since the sites discovery in the 19th century, excavations investigated the stratified human and
animal record of habitation which stretched back 35,000 years (ibid.: 38). These excavations confirmed
the long established dwelling of the local community on the land, as well as enhanced cultural and
historical ties. The social and archaeological information suggested a situation ripe for the community
approach. However, as the Brewarrina community is highly mixed, due to the relocation of numerous
Aboriginal populations by the Aboriginal Protection Board in the early 20th century, it meant that
internal conflicts were common and that there was much ill will to whitefellas due to historic
interference and years of prejudice (ibid.: 36). Brewarrina also has many other problems, from
unemployment to drugs and alcoholism, and the Cuddie Springs project shows the potential for
community archaeology to be successful in diverse social and cultural situations.
180 GEMMA TULLY

Methodological justification/reason for inclusion


The Cuddie Springs example was primarily selected to evaluate the similarity of readings by academics
of the same text. I wanted to compare my analysis of the project with some of the suggestions put
forward by the CAPQ which was guided by the work at Cuddie Springs in its development process.
The case study was also useful for analysis as it discussed collaboration from the excavation to
presentation stage. Although co-authored with members of the local community, the paper is written
predominantly from an archaeological perspective, revealing methodological factors through Field and
Colleys January 1997 interview sessions (see Field, 1997 for more detail). Further methodological
points are also implied in the general view (ibid.: 4345), meaning that Cuddie Springs both highlights
potential methods for community practice and also provides an interesting example for comparison
with the cases studies situated purely within the anthropological and curatorial realm.
2. NORTH AMERICA Descendants, decisions and power: the public interpretation of the archaeology
of the Levi Jordan Plantation, Carol McDavid (archaeologist), 1997
The Levi Jordan Plantation is situated in Brazoria County, Texas, some 61 miles south of Houston.
The mid 19th century plantation house (see Brown, 1990 for a detailed history) is one of the few
remaining original plantation structures in the region and is at the centre of local and archaeological
debate. Through inclusive strategies the archaeologists tried to discern whether the site was a
suitable location for the public interpretation of local plantation history (McDavid, 1997: 114). The
representation project developed after much of the archaeological work had been carried out and
reflects the difficulty of incorporating the views of archaeologists, descendants of the black African
Americans, and the white plantation owners, pre- and post-emancipation, for a relatively recent and
highly sensitive period of local and national history (ibid.: 116). The site has multiple archaeologies
and histories to reveal but the strong continuity between economic, racial and social segregation, past
and present, makes collaboration complex (see also Leone et al., 1987: 286). It is for this very reason
that the inclusive, public interpretation project was so important. By discovering how local people
viewed their own history and by bringing the numerous voices together, a means of representing this
important, identity-related element of the modern community could perhaps be achieved and assist in
healing long-held rifts.
Methodological justification/reason for inclusion
Written by an archaeologist, this project was selected because although it developed out of an
archaeological excavation, the collaborative focus was on public interpretation in the museological
presentation process. The example therefore had the potential to reveal a different archaeologically
based methodological perspective to the work at Cuddie Springs. This project was also a source of
inspiration for the CAPQ and allowed for further evaluation of the uniformity of academic text analysis,
as well as being an important example by directly stating elements of methodology. Much like the
CAPQ, Carol McDavid (1997: 119120) explains that although the paper deals with a particular
community, a particular social and political context, the ethical and practical concerns that apply to
it could be applied elsewhere: to other archaeologies, histories and communities, making it an
important example in the development of a more encompassing community methodology.
3. TURKEY atalhyk: the anthropology of an archaeological presence, David Shankland
(anthropologist), 1996
atalhyk is a pair of mounds, one Chalcolithic and the other dating to the 7th or 8th centuries BC,
situated on the Konya plain, Turkey. Following the original excavation in the 1960s by James Mellaart
(1962, 1963, 1964, 1966, 1967), a new programme of excavation and conservation began in 1993
due to the changing conditions of the area, new discoveries of similar sites across Anatolia and the
revolutionary analytical opportunities arising from scientific advancement (Hodder, 1996: 13).
The current work, projected to run for 25 years, is a collaboration between the British Institute for
Archaeology at Ankara, the Middle Eastern Technical University and numerous other Turkish
universities. The end result is to be the creation of a heritage site where visitors can experience
atalhyk from the conservation laboratory to the Neolithic town (ibid.: 1). The overall aim is to
develop scientific analysis and knowledge about the site as well as present it to visitors.
Although clearly not a community archaeology project from the outset, the infamy of the site with its
seemingly unique art and connection to concepts of the Mother Goddess led to the development of
numerous relationships between the archaeologists and the multiple interest groups. Both from within
Turkey and the wider world these groups greatly value the site and want to be involved in its
interpretation (Hodder, 1996: 4). The project is also concerned with contextualizing the understandings
between archaeologists and the local community. This is where Shanklands ethnographic study
becomes relevant, assessing how the two groups interact to create multiple interpretations of the site.
COMMUNITY ARCHAEOLOGY 181

Shankland conducted his fieldwork from within Kkky, the closest village to atalhyk, during the
third season of archaeological fieldwork at the site between 15 September and 30 October 1995,
and offers his views as a small step towards greater understanding that will need future revision
(Shankland, 1996: 349).
Methodological justification/reason for inclusion
This is an interesting example for study as it was by no means intended as a community archaeology
project from the outset and clearly followed the pattern of traditional scientific archaeological practice.
However, due to its post-processual research agenda, with a desire not to define typologies and
terminologies on a priori but based on the archaeological and local information (Hodder, 1996: 6),
Hodder would claim that it took up, perhaps subconsciously, many of the community archaeology
principles. This reveals how, in the post-processual archaeological climate, community archaeology
may occur almost by accident if truly following the multi-vocal, interactive, contextual and reflexive
mantras of this doctrine. It is also important because David Shankland, who was the assistant, and
later acting director of the British Institute at Ankara during the initiation of the recent atalhyk
project, is a British trained anthropologist (Shankland, 1996: 349) and would perhaps bring alternative
suggestions to the community approach.
4. NORTH AMERICA Integrating Native views into museum procedures: hope and practice at the
National Museum of the American Indian, Nancy B. Rosoff (associate curator at the National Museum
of the American Indian), 1998
Since the establishment of the National Museum of the American Indian (NMAI) in 1989 there has
been continuous collaboration between the museum staff and native communities. It is now part of
the NMAIs mission statement and collections policy to try and integrate the world views of Native
Americans into all elements of museum practice. This particular paper explores the attempts of the
NMAI to achieve this through the facilitation of numerous Native philosophies focusing on the fact that
objects are alive and must be handled with respect (Rosoff, 1998: 33). The collaborative work is a
long-term, on-going process and highlights the complex and sensitive nature of any community work.
Methodological justification/reason for inclusion
Looking at collaboration from the curatorial perspective, especially in terms of creating a culturally
sensitive means of dealing with human remains and sacred objects in the Native American Indian
context, is very useful for community archaeology as a whole. Archaeologists, if permitted to excavate
North American Indian sites, need to be aware of how to treat such objects respectfully and to
anticipate community wishes in terms of their study or re-deposition. The example therefore highlights
what I feel are numerous elements that should be incorporated into a general community archaeology
methodology in terms of repatriation and traditional care, which archaeological work in other parts
of the world, unlike the North American example, may not yet have been forced to consider. The
example is also interesting as the continuous collaboration policy, so strongly promoted by the NMAI,
is not so clearly articulate within the museums approach to the Yupik masks exhibition, discussed
below. Therefore we need to be aware that a museums aims and its practice, when it comes to the
final decision-making, may not, in reality, be so all-encompassing.
5. NORTH AMERICA Collaboration on display: a Yupik Eskimo exhibit at three national museums, Ann
Fienup-Riordan (anthropologist), 1999
This paper explores what happened when the Yupik mask exhibition Agayuliyararput (Our way of
making prayer) a three-way collaborative project between Yupik community members, Alaska,
museum professionals and anthropologist Ann Fienup Riordan was taken out of its original local
context and placed into the national realm (Fienup-Riordan, 1999: 339). Beginning life as a visual
repatriation project, with Yupik masks and other objects being loaned from museums to be put back
into their local context, the venture slowly transformed into a national tribal exhibition installed in three
very different national museums: the National Museum of the American Indian (NMAI) in New York, the
National Museum of Natural History in Washington DC, and the Seattle Art Museum. Three local
exhibitions had taken place previously in various Alaskan locations with large Yupik and other native
Alaskan communities. In these cases the focus had been the presentation of local meaning to a local
audience, as directed by local people (the steering committee of Yupik elders). Focusing on the strong
relationship between the masks and traditions of dance as a means of reconnecting people with their
past and empowering the Yupik identity in the present, strong community direction was evident
within the displays, telling individual stories and explaining the development process of the exhibition.
However, when the exhibition came to be installed in the large national institutions it soon became
clear that the results of collaboration and local meaning could not be so easily communicated (ibid.:
353). Consultation with the distant Yupik communities was reduced to the role of Ann Fienup-Riordan,
182 GEMMA TULLY

a non-native acting as spokesperson, with few of her demands being heard. The example highlights
the loss of the local in the national context. This is partially due to the reluctance of museum staff to
let go of some of their authority, as well as to the general lack of community training for educators,
designers and even curators when installing a supposedly collaborative exhibition.
Methodological justification/reason for inclusion
This is an important case study as it is a rare example of a community museum being transferred into
the national arena. It also reveals the ideas of Fienup-Riordan, an anthropologist who for the sake of
this project turned curator, in terms of methods for collaborative practice that can make or break a
community museology project. The example also allowed me to question whether and how this
anthropological perspective differed to that of Shankland (1996) and whether it presented any further
alternative collaborative methodological factors to those of the community archaeologists and
museum curators.
6. AUSTRALIA Torres Strait Islanders stories from an exhibition, Anita Herle (curator and
anthropologist, Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology, University of Cambridge, UK), 2000
In this ethnographic paper recording the creation of the Torres Strait Islanders: an exhibition to mark
the centenary of the 1898 anthropological expedition, Anita Herle reveals the role of cross-cultural
collaborative work (between the Islanders and the Cambridge museum) in reflecting the shifting stance
of museums as facilitators of contact and research combining curatorial expertise and indigenous
knowledge (2000: 253). The account offers an insiders discussion of the numerous anthropological
and museological considerations involved in the construction of the exhibition at the University of
Cambridge Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology. Based on the premise that objects in museum
collections have life histories and agency which connect people and events over space and time and
that exhibitions are complex processes which are both created and received (ibid.: 253254), the
exhibition hoped to explore the legacies of the 1898 Cambridge Anthropological Expedition as well as
reflect the richness of the Torres Strait Islanders culture, both past and present.
Methodological justification/reason for inclusion
This example was selected because collaboration was facilitated not only between different cultural
groups but also between different nations. As the final display was to be installed in the Cambridge
Museum of Archaeology, many thousands of miles from the Strait Islanders with whom the museum
was working, I was intrigued to see whether alternative methodologies would arise due to this spatial
distancing. I also hoped to consider how effective the approach would be when considering the
problems encountered by transferring meaning, a much lesser distance, within a nation, in the Yup'ik
example. The historical link between the two groups through the 1898 Cambridge Anthropological
Expedition, a turning point in the professionalization of anthropology worldwide (Herle, 2000: 254),
also provided a distinct context and high expectations for the work, which I wanted to explore further.

Acknowledgements
This paper was prepared as part of my archaeology Masters degree which was made
possible by the funding of the Arts and Humanities Research Council. I would like
to thank the chairman of the Quseir Heritage Preservation Society, Farid Mansour,
and all of my colleagues on the CAPQ team who have contributed to the ideas and
suggestions in this paper. I am especially grateful to the Egyptian community
archaeologists Adel Aiesh and Lamya Nasr el Nemr, and the Egyptian teachers
working at the Learning Development Centre in Quseir. Special thanks to Stephanie
Moser, Darren Glazier, Alistair Jones, Ross Webster, Glenda Jakubowski, Ben-
jamin Roberts and Melonie Schmierer for comments on a draft version of this
paper.

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Note on Contributor
I am a Ph.D. candidate at the University of Southampton. My research incorporates
Egyptian community perspectives within Egyptological display in the exploration of
new methods for the re-contextualization and representation of Ancient Egyptian
artefacts in the museum environment. Correspondence address: 6 Chandler Way,
Broughton Astley, Leicestershire LE9 6SW. Telephone: 07866 638811, Email:
get101@soton.ac.uk