FRIDAY FORUM: LAURA JUNKER
April 17 @ 12:00 pm - 1:30 pm
Co-Sponsored by CSEAS Friday Forum Lecture Series and the Archaeology Brown Bag Series
Community Engagements and Partnerships in Archaeological Fieldwork in the Philippines: Prehistoric Heritage to Recent History
Laura Lee Junker
Professor of Anthropology
Associate Dean for Behavioral Sciences, Fine Arts and Humanities
The Graduate College
University of Illinois at Chicago
INGRAHAM HALL, ROOM 206
NOON – 1:30PM
Long-term engagement with local contemporary communities concerned with preserving cultural heritage can be extremely fruitful by building strong and long-term relationships with local government officials and community members, particularly when archaeological teams develop a strong sense of joint stewardship of the archaeological remains discovered on their local landscapes. Community buy-in requires an enduring commitment by archaeologists to share responsibility for using best practices in collaborative archaeological fieldwork, curation of the material remains of their heritage, and interpretative models that directly involve community members, essentially a ‘co-curation’ model of preserving the past.
University of Illinois at Chicago and the National Museum of the Philippines archaeologists have formed a strong, decade-long partnership with the Bacong municipality in Negros Oriental Province that involves sharing responsibility for educating the largely rural populations in the region on the importance of the archaeological heritage in the region, training local individuals and groups to identify archaeological remains and report endangered archaeological sites, and integrating them into our field teams.
While our primary research largely focuses in on the middle first millennium A.D. to Spanish contact, our field team has also engaged in archaeological research on more recent WWII history, briefly discussing a second case of strong community partnership in the context of WWII archaeological remains in another region of the Philippines where community involvement was crucial in the piecing together the local history of WWII as they experienced it in their community.