Perceptions of Community Archaeology as a Practice and Profession: The Experience of the Council for British Archaeology's Community Archaeology Bursary Holders
AbstractThe growth of community archaeology and the engagement of the non-professional archaeologist in archaeology has grown significantly over the last thirty years. In the UK, this growth has to a large extent been driven by the political and social concern with "community" as a stabilising factor in society and the argument that a greater attachment to "place" provides social cohesiveness. Other factors such as an increase in leisure time in the active retired and the popularity of archaeology in the media, have also contributed to increasing numbers of the public becoming involved in the practice of archaeology. This research examines the role of the specialist"community archaeologist" within this landscape of increasing public participation. This analysis covers both the experience of the bursary holders who undertook the Council for British Archaeology's (CBA) Community Archaeology Bursary (CAB) training scheme which ran from 2011 to 2015 and the wider employment market for specialist community archaeologists. This research analyses the outcomes of the scheme against the Council's success measures and provides suggestions for further work. The author will argue that engagement of the public in the practice of archaeology exists as a series of practices all archaeologists should have in their professional repertoire, rather than a distinct specialist full time role. It will conclude that the focus of professional archaeological engagement with the public should be on supporting collaboration and democratic participation rather than what could be perceived as a colonisation of the practice and that the sector focus should be on building the practice of public engagement as an integral professional skill for any archaeologist.
CitationStringfellow, E. (2017). Perceptions of Community Archaeology as a Practice and Profession: The Experience of the Council for British Archaeology's Community Archaeology Bursary Holders (Master's thesis). University of Chester, United Kingdom.
PublisherUniversity of Chester
TypeThesis or dissertation
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