Decolonizing approaches in archaeology emerged as a means to counter the dominance of colonial ideologies and improve the accuracy of Indigenous representations. Historically, the routines of mainstream archaeological practice have been shaped by Western (primarily elite Euro-American) beliefs and categories. Although Indigenous people have long been used as informants, Western scientists have exerted control over Indigenous property, and Indigenous knowledges and concerns have been pushed to the margins. Decolonizing has both political and practical effects; it alters power relations among scientists and subjects, while also expanding the volume and accuracy of available Indigenous data.
Decolonizing archaeologists seek to untangle colonial influences by encouraging greater collaboration with Indigenous peoples, reconsidering foundational knowledges, and paying closer attention to the ethics of handling other peoples’ heritage. Decolonizing approaches are explicitly intended….