Caring for history: Tiwi and archaeological narratives of Fort Dundas/Punata, Melville Island, Australia

Clayton Fredericksen

    Research output: Contribution to journalComment/debate

    Abstract

    Archaeologists working in post-colonial nations are still coming to terms with the contextuality of their data. This is accentuated for archaeologists researching sites of indigenous/colonizer contact. Here descendants of the indigenous people who confronted European colonizers or invaders often possess rich narratives of those events. These narratives form a culturescape, a physical place composed of localities where the events of the remembered past took place. Archaeologists working with indigenous communities are confronted with these culturescapes, which tell the community history of places and give them cultural significance. Archaeological investigation of the early colonial site of Fort Dundas/Punata in northern Australia has encountered a Tiwi culturescape that is entwined with archaeological narrative constructed over the past twenty-five years. The discursive nature of culturescape formation at Fort Dundas/Punata is examined in the context of the articulation between Tiwi and archaeological narratives of the past.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)288-302
    Number of pages15
    JournalWorld Archeology
    Volume34
    Issue number2
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 2002

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