Racial Justice Matters: White Privilege and the Spectre of Scientific Objectivity

Author(s): Chelsea Blackmore

Year: 2018


We volunteer and engage with the public because we believe that history matters; that visibility of the everyday, of peoples and pasts marginalized and made invisible should be central to what we do. We can use our work, pre- and post-contact, as a means for public engagement and to dismantle political discussions rooted in ahistorical notions of human behavior and morality. But in serving the public interest, how do we also serve our membership, both in protecting their rights as human beings and as professionals? What responsibilities do we and the SAA have to our colleagues, students, mentors, and friends? In particular, how do our actions continue to marginalize people of color within our membership as well as minimalize the importance of racial justice actions? This paper examines how white privilege and calls for scientific "objectivity" ignore the structural violence that continues to impact our practice as well as our participation in current political and social activism.

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Racial Justice Matters: White Privilege and the Spectre of Scientific Objectivity. Chelsea Blackmore. Presented at The 82nd Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, Washington, DC. 2018 ( tDAR id: 445069)

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Abstract Id(s): 21445