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The role of historical archaeology in the emergence of nationalist identities in the Celtic countries

Author(s): Harold Mytum

Year: 2014

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Summary

Although prehistory was used by some cultural brokers in the definition of nationalist identities from the late 18th century onwards, it was historic periods were most frequently brought forward in argument and used as an inspiration for nationalistic argument and symbolism. Documented named groups and individuals on the one hand, and material objects ‘ both sites and portable artefacts ‘ on the other, provided the warp and weft to weave nationalist narratives. Antiquarianism and early scientific archaeology therefore carried with it clear political implications within the preferred interpretations. Some of the nationalistic tropes have been deconstructed in recent years, but others have been continued, often buried within the various traditions (Irish, Manx, Scottish, Welsh) of doing archaeology so that their origins and explicit political implications lie buried beneath generational strata of practice.


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Cite this Record

The role of historical archaeology in the emergence of nationalist identities in the Celtic countries. Harold Mytum. Presented at Society for Historical Archaeology, Quebec City, Quebec, Canada. 2014 ( tDAR id: 436964)


Record Identifiers

PaperId(s): SYM-42,03

Arizona State University The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation National Science Foundation National Endowment for the Humanities Society for American Archaeology Archaeological Institute of America