Black Feminist Archaeology
Black feminist thought has developed in various parts of the academy for over three decades, but has made only minor inroads into archaeological theory and practice. Whitney Battle-Baptiste outlines the basic tenets of Black feminist thought and research for archaeologists and shows how it can be used to improve contemporary historical archaeology. She demonstrates this using Andrew Jackson’s Hermitage, the W. E. B. Du Bois Homesite in Massachusetts, and the Lucy Foster house in Andover, which represented the first archaeological excavation of an African American home. Her call for an archaeology more sensitive to questions of race and gender is an important development for the field.
“Battle-Baptiste has wielded her keyboard in bringing awareness to the life stories of those who have too long walked in the shadows and invites us to bear witness to them. In doing so, she provides another crucial perspective to the growing literature on the potentials for transforming archaeological practice and theory, and the rationales for why this is necessary.”—from the foreword by Maria Franklin, University of Texas at Austin
“Battle-Baptiste takes us on three journeys, through the history of African American life in the U.S., through the history of African American archaeology, and her own journey of as a Black woman making a career in the academy. Her insights emerging from her distinctive Black Feminist approach provide important and novel insights for any scholar interested in the American past and future.”—Robert Paynter, University of Massachusetts, Amherst
“Battle-Baptiste shows clearly how looking “inward” can provide new questions and new forms of analysis, thus enabling archaeology (as both scientific endeavor and social practice) to move forward in positive ways. This is a good and useful book for any archaeologist, in any subfield, at any level of study.”—Carol McDavid, Current Anthropology