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“I Could Feel Your Heart”

The Transformative and Collaborative Power of Heartfelt Thinking in Archaeology
  • Sarah L. Surface-EvansEmail author
Chapter
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Abstract

As anthropologists we know that the heart is considered a source of strength in many cultures. Yet in Western society and the culture of science, the heart is generally feminized and, as a consequence, devalued. Guided by feminist and Indigenous theory, I have established an archaeological practice that foregrounds heartfelt thinking as part of community-based heritage work. Importantly, I strive to train the next generation of archaeology professionals to recognize the role of the heart in promoting an effective multivocal research perspective. There are many challenges to such an approach, not least of which is the perception that inclusive and reflexive practice is a sign of weakness. This chapter reviews personal challenges I have experienced in operationalizing an epistemology of the heart. I explore why it is imperative to overcome these problems to reinvent the discipline of archaeology.

Keywords

Community-based archaeology Reflexive practice Multivocal archaeology Pedagogy 

Notes

Acknowledgments

I would like to express profound gratitude to the Saginaw Chippewa Tribe of Michigan for entrusting me to be a partner in the study and preservation of the Mount Pleasant Indian Industrial Boarding School, Miigwetch. Thank you to the members of the boarding school committee, staff of the Ziibiwing Center of Anishinabe Culture and Lifeways, Tribal Council, and the many elders and community members who have shared their knowledge with me. I also gratefully acknowledge all of the teachers who have influenced my life path. I appreciate the editors of this volume for asking me to be a part of this important work and for the anonymous reviewers for their insightful feedback.

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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2020

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Central Michigan UniversityMount PleasantUSA

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