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Blurring Timescapes, Subverting Erasure: Remembering Ghosts on the Margins of History

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Blurring Timescapes, Subverting Erasure

Remembering Ghosts on the Margins of History

Edited by Sarah Surface-Evans, Amanda E. Garrison and Kisha Supernant

210 pages, 44 illus., bibliog., index

ISBN  978-1-78920-710-1 $120.00/£89.00 Hb Published (August 2020)

eISBN 978-1-78920-711-8 eBook

Hb View cartYour country: United States - Click here to remove geolocation   Buy the eBook! $29.95 Request a Review or Examination Copy (in Digital Format) Recommend to your Library Available in GOBI®


“This book is an exciting and invigorating experience for the reader. The reader is asked to engage actively with stories that stand outside typical conventions of scholarly narratives, and the quality of the writing makes that an easy task…Blurring ideas of time and space allow other critical aspects of the tangible and intangible to come into sharp focus, and gently provoke new ways of thinking and knowing.” • Jane Baxter, DePaul University

“This collection represents contemporary archaeological praxis that realigns the possibilities of archaeological theory through radical, brave, and at times vulnerable intersectional standpoints that inform a new way forward. The case studies, analysis, and life stories stay with you after you read it; it haunts you.” • Uzma Z. Rizvi, Pratt Institute


What happens when we blur time and allow ourselves to haunt or to become haunted by ghosts of the past? Drawing on archaeological, historical, and ethnographic data, Blurring Timescapes, Subverting Erasure demonstrates the value of conceiving of ghosts not just as metaphors, but as mechanisms for making the past more concrete and allowing the negative specters of enduring historical legacies, such as colonialism and capitalism, to be exorcised.

Sarah Surface-Evans is an Associate Professor of Anthropology at Central Michigan University. Her community-based archaeological research investigates cultural landscapes in the Great Lakes region. Her recent publication “A Landscape of Assimilation and Resistance: The Mount Pleasant Indian Industrial Boarding School” (2016) in the International Journal of Historical Archaeology examines the gendered and powered components of institutional design at Federal Indian Boarding Schools. This ongoing research was recognized for a Michigan Governor's Award for Historic Preservation in 2016. She has a forthcoming publication that utilizes “haunting” as a way conceptualize the trauma of colonial landscapes.

Amanda E. Garrison is an Assistant Professor of Sociology at Central Michigan University. She earned her doctorate in Rural Sociology from the University of Missouri in 2011. Her work focuses on the development of graphic sociological methodology for scholarship and pedagogy. Her graphic work includes “Ghosts of Infertility: haunted by realities of reproductive death” (2016). Garrison’s research interests also include social consequences resulting from urban planning policies, impacting urban infrastructure in Rust Belt cities. Her work in this subject area includes “Boneyards of the Sortatropolis: Exploring a City of Industrial Secrets - Lansing, Michigan (Part 1)” (2017).

Kisha Supernant is Métis and an Associate Professor in the Department of Anthropology, University of Alberta. She is the Director of the Exploring Métis Identity Through Archaeology (EMITA) Project and has published widely in national and international journals, including PNAS, Journal of Archaeological Science, Journal of Anthropological Archaeology, and the Canadian Journal of Archaeology, and she is co-editing a forthcoming book entitled Heart-Centred and Emotional Archaeologies. An award-winning researcher, teacher, and writer, Dr. Supernant is actively involved in research on cultural identities, landscapes, collaborative Indigenous archaeology, Métis archaeology, and heart-centered archaeological practice.

Subject: Archaeology Anthropology (General) Memory Studies Heritage Studies


List of Illustrations

Sarah Surface-Evans, A. E. Garrison, and Kisha Supernant

Part I: Imagining Timescapes: Invoking Haunting, Memory, and Nostalgia

Chapter 1. Telling Ghost Stories: Communicating across Timescapes and between Worldviews
April M. Beisaw

Chapter 2. Material Memories: Interpreting Souvenirs and Heirlooms in the Archaeological Record
Erica Begun

Chapter 3. Journeys through Space and Time: Materiality, Social Memory, and Community at the City of David
Heather Van Wormer

Part II: Confronting Lingering Specters

Chapter 4. Recognizing Ghosts and Haunting in the Rural Midwest: Finding Community, Identity, and Wisdom in the Past
P. M. W. Lawton

Chapter 5. The Unwilling Student and the Ghost of Physical Anthropology: Public Perceptions of the Ethics of Physical Anthropology
Nicole M. Burt

Chapter 6. From Haunted to Haunting: Métis Ghosts in the Past and Present
Kisha Supernant

Part III: Identifying Ghosts within the Capitalist Landscapes of Late Modernity

Chapter 7. Rain on the Scarecrow, Blood on the Plow: Haunting, Trauma, and the Cruelty of the Agrarian Dream
Lilian Brislen

Chapter 8. Boneyard Quiet: A Ghost Story
A. E. Garrison

Chapter 9. Traumascapes: Progress and the Erasure of the Past
Sarah Surface-Evans

Chapter 10. Brickwork, Capitalism, Collective Memory, and the Commons
Brigitte H. Bechtold

Epilogue: Ghosts, Haunting, and Refusals to Erasure
Kisha Supernant, April M. Beisaw, A. E. Garrison, and Sarah Surface-Evans


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