Postcolonial Studies are a research field still little explored in Italy and almost unknown in archaeology. Moving Italian archaeology towards Postcolonial Archaeology does not only mean dealing with the colonialist use of the discipline, but it means, in a broader sense, being aware that the cognitive categories, the ways of understanding and the modern social thought, and therefore also those of archaeology, are permeated by the Eurocentric, imperialist and racist logic of colonial power. Starting from these assumptions, Postcolonial Archaeology has begun to reflect on how the discipline constructs the narratives on past societies and on how the alleged economic and cultural hegemony of Europe and the notion of European progress as the main parameter of assessment in the comparisons of the other cultures of the planet, have influenced the way we write history.


To explore Postcolonial Archaeology, the class in Archaeological Methods and Theory organises two seminars on the subject:

Tuesday, November 15, 2022, at 4.00 pm in Room G6 (via Trieste 38, Pisa), Simona Troilo (University of L’Aquila) will talk about Italian colonial archaeology in the long period between 1899 and 1940, presenting her book Pietre d’Oltremare. Scavare, conservare, immaginare l’Impero (1899-1940).

Tuesday, November 29, 2022, at 4.00 pm in Room G6 (via Trieste 38, Pisa), Maria Pia Guermandi will present her book Decolonizzare il Patrimonio. L’Europa, l’Italia e un passato che non passa and will illustrate how a critical approach to archaeological and cultural heritage must start from understanding the European and Italian colonial past to experience a more democratic and aware use of the heritage itself.