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Davidson I. Scales and Balance: Archaeology, Cultural Heritage and Sustainability. 2008.
Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://e-publications.une.edu.au/1959.11/2077
Scales and Balance: Archaeology, Cultural Heritage and Sustainability
New technologies have provided access to information across the world on an unparalleled scale and have allowed access to new types of information. This has enabled archaeologists, historians and other humanities scholars to ground their arguments on a much broader basis than before and with greater ease of scholarship. But this has also led to some unexpected challenges related to differing expectations of the function of such humanities disciplines. These challenges need to be met with a balanced assessment of the value of different humanities. In this talk I will discuss the political role of knowledge of the past and how that global politics is influenced by the realisation that modern human behaviour is a relatively recent phenomenon in the period since we shared an ancestor with other apes. I will also give examples of the way new technologies have affected the way we can see cultural heritage and discuss the delicate interaction between industry and archaeology with reference to current controversy in the Dampier Archipelago. The talk will end with a discussion of the lessons from archaeology about the sustainability of particular ways of life and the lessons we might draw from them.