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"It’s not like it’s the Acropolis:" Archaeology and Local Communities in Greece today

Date and Time: 
Thursday, May 10, 2018. 05:00 PM - 06:30 PM
Meeting Location: 
Stanford Archaeology Center
Workshop: 
Archaeology--Political Landscapes: Past and Present
Meeting Description: 

The role of the past, antiquities and archaeology in modern Greece has been the focus of several critical investigations in the last twenty years. The past - predominantly meant as the classical past - has been described as a ‘burden’, a debt the country is destined to never pay back. Antiquities are seen as an inexhaustible arsenal in defense of the country against its presumed enemies, tangible proof of the glorious past as well as a potential resource for the country’s dire economic state. Archaeology, as a practice exclusively entrenched in the duties of the state Archaeological Service and as a discipline, has been criticized for continuing to serve the nationalist ideal. 

Very little research has been conducted on public perceptions of antiquities and archaeology. Dr. Anastasia Sakellariadi will discuss the findings of her doctoral research conducted via population surveys and interviews about the role of antiquities and archaeology in three local communities in Greece. Within these communities the full range of past relics are present, from prehistoric dwellings to classical and early Christian. Through the lens of public perception and stakeholder views, the role of antiquity and antiquities seems to remain unchallenged while perceptions of archaeology and archaeologists vary greatly.

Dr. Sakellariadi is an archaeologist specialized in public archaeology and heritage studies. In her PhD research at UCL’s Institute of Archaeology, she investigated the socio-political and economic role of archaeology in local communities in Greece today. As a postdoctoral research associate at Princeton University’s Center for Hellenic Studies, she further analyzed her doctoral research results through anthropological, sociological and historical studies on modern Greece. From 2014 to 2016, she coordinated and taught a Master's course on Cultural Policy and Cultural Management (Open University of Cyprus) and a Master's course on Managing Archaeological Sites (UCL Institute of Archaeology). She is also a heritage management consultant, and through strategic participatory planning, she facilitates the sustainable management of communities’ and organizations’ cultural resources.

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