Battle of the Bones

Anthropologists have long looted the gravesites of native peoples in the name of science — and profit. But the recent trend to return those remains for reburial is not always welcomed by the cultures involved. “Far from being led by Native communities, the trend towards repatriation is driven by intellectuals on the cultural left, and endorsed by the key cultural and political institutions in mainstream Western society. It is a consequence of the decline of Enlightenment values within intellectual thought and the rise of relativism and mysticism within postmodern academia, and has had a practical impact upon governments and museums. If indigenous groups have come to identify with repatriation claims, it is mainly because they are working within a political terrain set up by intellectual trends generated elsewhere.” Josie AppletonBattle of the BonesSpikedOnline)