About the Book
The definition of "public archaeology" has expanded in recent years to include archaeologists' collaborations with and within communities and activities in support of education, civic renewal, peacebuilding, and social justice. Barbara Little and Paul Shackel, long-term leaders in the growth of a civically-engaged, relevant archaeology, outline a future trajectory for the field in this concise, thoughtful volume. Drawing from the archaeological study of race and labor, among other examples, the authors explore this crucial opportunity and responsibility, then point the way for the discipline to contribute to the contemporary public good.
About the Author: Barbara J. Little is an Adjunct Professor of Anthropology and an Affiliate of the Center for Heritage Resource Studies at the University of Maryland, College Park. For twenty years she was an archaeologist with the U.S. National Park Service, where she is now the program manager for the cultural resources office of outreach. Dr. Little is particularly interested in the ways in which heritage is valued, recognized, and interpreted. She works in public archaeology on issues of public outreach and involvement, on the evaluation and official designations of archaeological places, and on the public relevance of archaeology. Her book, Historical Archaeology: Why the Past Matters (2007), was named an "Outstanding Academic Title" by Choice in 2008. In 2009, she delivered a lecture entitled "Reintegrating Archaeology in the Service of Sustainable Culture" as the Patty Jo Watson Distinguished Lecture in Archaeology at the American Anthropological Association meeting. She is the only federal archaeologist to be awarded this honor since this annual lecture was established in 1989. Paul A. Shackel is Professor of Anthropology at the University of Maryland. His archaeology projects have focused the role of archaeology in civic engagement activities. He co-edited a book related to this topic titled Archeology as a Tool of Civic Engagement (AltaMira, 2007, with Barbara Little). He collaborated with other institutions to train undergraduates in archaeology to explore issues of race, class and ethnicity on the Illinois western frontier at a biracial town known as New Philadelphia. Much of this work can be found in his book New Philadelphia: An Archaeology of Race in the Heartland (California, 2011). More recently, he is engaged in developing a project that focuses on labor and immigration in northeastern Pennsylvania. The foundation for the project can be found in The Archaeology of American Labor and Working Class Life (Florida, 2009). A recent article provides an overview of the project - "The Gilded Age Wasn't So Gilded in the Anthracite Region of Pennsylvania" (with Michael Roller) in the International Journal of Historical Archaeology.