A decolonial perspective on archaeological practices in the Indian context


Decolonial approaches in archaeology draw upon critiques of colonialism by Latin American scholars such as Anibal Quijano and Maria Lugones, who firmly link power, knowledge making and practice to world-systems theory. Under this model, a small number of Europeans took control of the world's resources and their descendants continue to dominate the 'new world order', benefiting from exploitation of the lands and lives of colonized peoples in the Americas, Africa and Asia. Colonized peoples experience 'race' and racial discrimination, gender, sexuality and social relations within this power structure and this is the framework within which 'Western' culture and knowledge making are practiced. In this paper, I will examine Indian archaeology and recent developments through the lens of decolonial thinking. In particular, I will discuss the social context of archaeology and efforts in public archaeology.

WAC Inter-Congress 2021