Displacement and Burials in Wartime Acholiland; Archaeological Surveying and Ethnographic Research in Northern Uganda
A multi-subfield anthropological research team from the University of Tennessee Knoxville has been conducting fieldwork in Acholiland since 2014 in order to analyze how improper burials are affecting the cultural and geospatial reality of post-war Northern Uganda. The project has primarily involved ethnographic research; however, archaeological surveying was introduced in 2016 for the purpose of locating and documenting wartime burials. The concerned burials are related to the 1987 to 2006 war between the Ugandan Government and the Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA) rebels in which the local tribal population, the Acholi people, were subject to attacks from both sides during the war. Many civilian wartime burials are located in Internally Displaced Person’s (IDP) camps, mass graves, or as skeletal surface scatters throughout the landscape. These forms of burials constitute a violation of traditional Acholi practices, which require graves to be placed on ancestral land in individual grave plots. Fieldwork conducted links the burials to spiritual disturbances as well as subsistence impediments within Acholi communities. Archaeological surveying provides evidence of the displacements and the violence committed against the Acholi during the war and survey reports may assist in establishing the location of burials for future exhumation and repatriation to ancestral lands.
Cite this Record
Displacement and Burials in Wartime Acholiland; Archaeological Surveying and Ethnographic Research in Northern Uganda. Lucia Elgerud, Hugh Tuller, Wilfred Komakech. Presented at The 82nd Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, Washington, DC. 2018 ( tDAR id: 445187)
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min long: 24.082; min lat: -26.746 ; max long: 56.777; max lat: 17.309 ;
Abstract Id(s): 20411