1st Edition

Trafficking Culture New Directions in Researching the Global Market in Illicit Antiquities

    182 Pages 12 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    182 Pages 12 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    Trafficking Culture outlines current research and thinking on the illicit market in antiquities. It moves along the global trafficking chain from ‘source’ to ‘market’, identifying the main roles and routines involved. Using original research, the authors explore the dynamics of this ‘grey’ market, where legal and illegal goods are mixed and conflated. It compares and contrasts this illicit trade with other ‘transnational criminal markets’, such as the illegal trades in wildlife and diamonds.

    The analytical frames of organized crime and white-collar crime, drawn from criminology, provide a fresh perspective on a problem that has tended to be seen as archaeological, rather than criminological. Bringing insights from both disciplines together, this book represents a productive discourse between experts in these two fields, working together for several years to produce the evidence base that is reported here.

    Innovative forms of regulation are the most productive way to explore crime control in this field, and this book provides a series of propositions about practical crime reduction measures for the future. It will be invaluable to academics working in the fields of archaeology, criminology, art history, museum studies, and heritage. The book will also be a vital resource for professionals in the field of cultural property protection and preservation.


    Chapter 1: The Structure of the Global Market in Illicit Antiquities: Actors, Drivers, Mechanisms

    Chapter 2: Interfaces and antiquities smuggling chains: blurring on the margins of "Source", "Transit", "Destination Market"

    Chapter 3: The trade in illicit antiquities as a transnational criminal market

    Chapter 4: The destination market

    Chapter 5: White collar crime and facilitation of the criminal market by ‘legitimate’ actors

    Chapter 6: Autoregulation of the destination market?

    Chapter 7: Regulation, Self-Regulation and Ethical Consumption Markets

    Chapter 8: Policy failure, policy future

    Appendix: Case Studies



    Simon Mackenzie is Professor of Criminology at Victoria University of Wellington and Professor of Criminology, Law and Society in the Scottish Centre for Crime and Justice Research at the University of Glasgow, in the College of Social Sciences. He is author of Going, Going, Gone: Regulating the Market in Illicit Antiquities (2005) and co-editor of Criminology and Archaeology: Studies in Looted Antiquities (2009).

    Neil Brodie is a Senior Research Fellow on the Endangered Archaeology of the Middle East and North Africa (EAMENA) project at the University of Oxford. He co-edited Archaeology, Cultural Heritage, and the Antiquities Trade (2006), Illicit Antiquities: The Theft of Culture and the Extinction of Archaeology (2002), and Trade in Illicit Antiquities: The Destruction of the World’s Archaeological Heritage (2001).

    Donna Yates is a  Senior Lecturer in Antiquities Trafficking and Art Crime at the Scottish Centre for Crime and Justice Research at the University of Glasgow. She completed her PhD in Archaeology at the University of Cambridge, and is the lead educator for the University of Glasgow’s Postgraduate Certification in Antiquities Trafficking and Art Crime.

    Christos Tsirogiannis is Associate Professor in the Faculty of Arts at the Museum of Ancient Art, University of Aarhus. He conducts multi-disciplinary research on international networks trafficking in illicit antiquities. Recent article topics have included museum ethics, market 'due diligence', and the evidential basis for repatriations, to which his identifications of illicit objects frequently lead.

    "The writers have produced an outstanding overview of the flow of antiquities, moving from the source of the looting or excavation, through transit states, and culminating in museums, showrooms, and private collections. This book stands as an excellent summary of the work being done on this illicit trade, and will be an invaluable resource for those familiar with the subject, and for those new to it." – Prof. Derek Fincham, South Texas College of Law Houston, USA


    "This fascinating book will become the go-to resource on the global market in illicit antiquities. The authors’ in-depth investigations into this devastating global crime problem highlight the importance of collecting and analysing evidence to counter the justifications that can exist in the often grey worlds that thrive around illicit antiquities. Highly accessible, the book engages with theory, research methods and international policy in a manner that provides a valuable counterpoint to much work on the area that is based on conjecture. In presenting their hugely significant Trafficking Culture research, the authors also promote an important future policy approach. The book will inspire future research into the global market in illicit antiquities and serve as an example of how it should be undertaken." – John Kerr, University of Roehampton, UK