The Archaeology of the People’s Century?

Author(s): David Sables

Year: 2013


The 20th century has widely been portrayed in the British media as the people’s century. This paper will examine the part played by archaeologists in the formation of this idea which, in my opinion, not only fails to reflect many of the stresses within British society, but also underplays the value of significant areas of British heritage. The result is that large sections of the recent past are seen as something that is ‘best not talked about’ to the public (Faull, pers comm, 2011) and the almost complete ignoring of the archaeological potential of sites of confrontation between mainstream society and those seen as threatening it. It will also discuss my belief that those involved in the portrayal of the past have a duty to begin to reverse this process by including alternative views, not only in their academic discussions, but also when presenting their narratives to the general public.

Cite this Record

The Archaeology of the People’s Century?. David Sables. Presented at Society for Historical Archaeology, Leicester, England, U.K. 2013 ( tDAR id: 428253)

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Geographic Keywords
United Kingdom Western Europe

Spatial Coverage

min long: -8.158; min lat: 49.955 ; max long: 1.749; max lat: 60.722 ;

Record Identifiers

PaperId(s): 145