Lande: the calais ‘jungle’ and beyond
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This book looks at La Lande – the site of the ‘Jungle’ at Calais during the years 2015 to 2016 – through the lens of Contemporary Archaeology. Such an approach draws on the distinctive focus on material culture, the built environment, and landscapes and ecologies, that emerge through the application of approaches from anthropological archaeology to the most recent past and the undocumented present. This exercise in Contemporary Archaeology aims to expand the field of material culture studies (Hicks, 2010) through a foregrounding of place, time, transformation, visuality, (post)colonial legacies, and intervention, and also to open new dialogues with the anthropological museum as a political space. The book is a companion volume to an exhibit, also titled Lande: The Calais ‘Jungle’ and beyond, displayed at the Pitt Rivers Museum during 2019. Taken together, the book and the exhibit aim to raise cross-disciplinary questions around the material, environmental, temporal and visual dimensions of La Lande as a place of dehumanising borderwork, governance and violence on the one hand, and on the other as a ‘space of appearance’ and protest, and as a site for comparison. In this respect, they also represent a contribution to the prospect of a Visual Archaeology, and towards the possibilities of Activist Archaeologies that engage with a wider cross-cultural moment of visual politics. We introduce the idea of giving time as one way of conceptualising the work of archaeologists in the contemporary world that takes inspiration from the many grassroots movements around Calais. We also introduce the idea of militarist colonialism as a key part of the ongoing human and material legacies encountered at La Lande.
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