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Future Archaeologies: Writing speculative fabulation (SF) from fragments of evidence

20 March

Half-day workshop at Linnaeus University, Kalmar, Sweden.

Archaeologists have long argued for “the productive and generative potential of breakage and decay” (as Josh Pollard memorably wrote). Many elsewhere in the humanities and social sciences would agree: knowledge is situated, empirical evidence is always partial, the worlds we make from evidence gathered (in the ethnographic past) does not quite go together– like a collection of pot sherds it has gaps, is multiple, becomes diffractive. Our stories of the world are both empirical and creative– made from fragments and assembled. Donna Haraway calls such work Speculative Fabulation, String Figures, SF, in a provocation that reminds us (like Pollard) to explore the generativity of our partial not complete perspective. Through generating different empirical stories in collaboration with our evidence and with other interests, our world could be made otherwise.

This session is a provocation and exploration of the implications of considering heritage and archaeology as speculative futures. What possible empirical stories might we assemble from different fragments of evidence? Rather then decay as loss, we will explore how decay generates diverse futures.

All participants please bring 5 pieces of empirical evidence to work with (that can be anything from material fragments, to document fragments, to ethnographic notes, and will likely be a mixture…)

Please confirm your participation and/or interest in future collaboration with Cornelius Holtorf, Archaeology, School of Cultural Sciences, Linnaeus University.

Details

Date:
20 March

Venue

Linnaeus University
Kalmar, Sweden