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It's not all about archaeology

  • Laurajane Smith (a1) and Gary Campbell (a1)

As the authors of the Association of Critical Heritage Studies manifesto (Campbell & Smith 2011), there are aspects of the debate piece by González-Ruibal et al. (above) that we have no trouble agreeing with, but we take issue with other elements. This paper sets up far too many straw people, based on a limited engagement with the archaeological and heritage studies literature. At its heart, and despite the radical rhetoric, Gonzalez-Ruibal et al.’s paper is another defence of archaeological expertise by archaeologists, based on a dubious equation of reactionary politics with communities and the popular.

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Campbell, G. & Smith, L.. 2011. Manifesto of the Association of Critical Heritage Studies. Available at: (accessed 12 January 2017).
Hall, S. 1979. The great moving right show. Marxism Today 23 (1): 1420.
IPinCH. 2016. Intellectual property issues in cultural heritage: theory, practice, policy, ethics. Available at: (accessed 12 January 2017).
Kalela, J. 2012. Making history: the historian and uses of the past. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan.
Little, B.J. & Shackel, P.A.. 2014. Archaeology, heritage, and civic engagement: working toward the public good. Walnut Creek (CA): Left Coast.
Lowenthal, D. 1996. The heritage crusade and the spoils of history. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
Schmidt, P. & Pikirayi, I.. 2016. Community archaeology and heritage in Africa: decolonizing practice. London: Routledge.
Smith, L. 2004. Archaeological theory and the politics of cultural heritage. London: Routledge.
Smith, L. & Campbell, G.. 2017. ‘Nostalgia for the future’: memory, nostalgia and the politics of class. International Journal of Heritage Studies 23 (7): 116.
Smith, L. & Waterton, E.. 2009. Heritage, communities and archaeology. London: Duckworth.
Waterton, E. & Smith, L.. 2010. The recognition and misrecognition of community heritage. International Journal of Heritage Studies 16 (1–2): 415.
Winter, T. 2013. Clarifying the critical in critical heritage studies. International Journal of Heritage Studies 19: 532–45.
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  • ISSN: 0003-598X
  • EISSN: 1745-1744
  • URL: /core/journals/antiquity
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