The Colonial Archaeological Hero Reconsidered: Postcolonial Perspectives on the 'Discovery' of Pre-Historic Indonesia

Research output: Chapter in book/volumeChapterScientificpeer-review

25 Downloads (Pure)

Abstract

Taking as its starting point a collection of (auto)biographical narratives on the academic careers of Dutch prehistorians Van Stein Callenfels, Van Heekeren and Van der Hoop, this paper discusses the phenomenon of the ‘colonial archaeologist as hero’ from both a historical and a theoretical (post-colonial) perspective. We thus reconsider those colonial archaeologists who, according to traditional histories of archaeology, ‘discovered’ the prehistoric past of Indonesia during the 1920s and 1930s. We do this in order to gain a better understanding of the colonial dimension of research into the prehistory of the Dutch East Indies and the way it continues to affect the archaeology of post-colonial Indonesia. We focus on the dynamic social and cultural contexts within which the archaeological research was developed and conclude that the creation of knowledge of the prehistoric past included various forms of indigenous involvement.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationHistoriographical Approaches to Past Archaeological Research
EditorsGisela Eberhardt, Fabian Link
Place of PublicationBerlin
Publisheredition Topoi
Pages133-164
Number of pages31
ISBN (Print)978-3-9816384-1-7
Publication statusPublished - 2015

Publication series

NameBerlin Studies of The Ancient World
Publisheredition Topoi
Volume32

Keywords

  • history of archaeology
  • decolonisation
  • Indonesian history

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'The Colonial Archaeological Hero Reconsidered: Postcolonial Perspectives on the 'Discovery' of Pre-Historic Indonesia'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

  • Cite this

    Bloembergen, M., & Eickhoff, M. (2015). The Colonial Archaeological Hero Reconsidered: Postcolonial Perspectives on the 'Discovery' of Pre-Historic Indonesia. In G. Eberhardt, & F. Link (Eds.), Historiographical Approaches to Past Archaeological Research (pp. 133-164). (Berlin Studies of The Ancient World; Vol. 32). edition Topoi. http://www.edition-topoi.org/articles/details/the-colonial-archaeological-hero-reconsidered