Political Archaeologies / The Politics of Archaeology

PhD Course, the Norwegian Institute in Rome, April 25-29, 2022.

Dialogues with the Past. The Nordic Graduate School in Archaeology

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Academic archaeology is part of, as well as a product of, an increasingly politicized world in which researchers are expected to set the agenda as well as respond to the key issues in the societies we live in. How politics impacts and shapes archaeological studies can take a variety of forms. This can range from archaeologists taking an explicitly activist stance, through to the incorporation of specific ethical positions in how we conduct our work or simply acknowledging the need to engage with topical concerns in how we design research and envisage its outputs.

This DialPast course is designed for archaeologists who are working across a wide spectrum of issues in terms of how we conduct ‘political archaeologies’ as well as how we navigate the politics of conducting archaeology today. The course will include presentations on constructing overtly political archaeological research methodologies as well as discussing how we make your research more topical and politically nuanced in ways that may appeal to funding bodies. In this respect, the course will deal with “politics” with a big "P" and also a little "p". This course will particularly appeal to those who are interested in political engaged scholarship, but also those who wish to have a better understanding of the potential ethical implications of their research and those who wish to consider how to engage with the politics of conducting archaeologies in the present.

We invite students from a variety of archaeological and aligned disciplinary backgrounds. Course lecturers have extensive experience and indepth expertise in working with the political in archaeology, including working with the politics of examining race, gender, class, security, conflict and ethics in the archaeological record.

Course Work

The course will consist of both seminars and lectures. Before the course starts, each PhD student will prepare a paper for pre-circulation, addressing her or his research project in relation to the course theme. In the course seminars, each paper will be allotted ca. 45 minutes, beginning with the student presenting a 15-minute summary of its contents. One of the other PhD students will be selected in advance as a discussant and comment for about 10 minutes, after which she or he will then chair an open discussion on the paper for approximately 20 minutes.

The participating lecturers will each give a lecture during the course, as well as participating as prime movers in the discussion of PhD presentations. The seminar days will be structured with adequate time for spin-off debates and networking opportunities in mind.


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Whitney Battle-Baptiste       Rui Gomes Coelho        Sarah De Nardi              Laura McAtackney


1 month or 7 ECTS

Location, Travel and Costs

The Graduate School will finance and arrange travel and accommodation, and supply a daily allowance during the seminar for all participating PhD students who are part of the Dialogues With the Past Network. Two and two PhD students will be accomodated in twin rooms.


The Graduate school invites all registered PhD students to apply for participation. Please fill out the application form to apply for the course (in English only). From these applications, c. 15 PhD students will be admitted to the course.

For more information, please contact: oliver.reiersen@iakh.uio.no

Important Dates

Application for participation: December 10, 2021. Confirmation on your participation will be sent out shortly after this date.

Submission of working papers (10 pages, Times New Roman 12, Spacing 1,5): March 1, 2022

Published Aug. 24, 2021 12:56 PM - Last modified Nov. 16, 2021 3:03 PM