Archaeology, Museums, and the Anthropocene

Author(s): Torben Rick

Year: 2018


While debate continues about when the Anthropocene began, many researchers have shifted focus away from questions about the onset of the Anthropocene to questions of why, how, and what next? Museums are poised to play an important role in societal and scientific conversations about the pressing issues of the Anthropocene and how best to move forward in the age of humans. Building on a variety of ongoing efforts, I discuss the role of museum based archaeological research, collections, and education and outreach in helping frame perspectives on the Anthropocene and engage members of the public in meaningful conversations about the future of our planet. Archaeological data and the long record of human-environmental interactions that we have at our disposal are poised to play a leading role in future dialogue about a host of issues related to the Anthropocene and museums should be at the forefront of this effort.

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Archaeology, Museums, and the Anthropocene. Torben Rick. Presented at The 82nd Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, Washington, DC. 2018 ( tDAR id: 444001)

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Abstract Id(s): 19924