Mark Axel Tveskov and Ashley Ann BissonnetteMar 10, 2023
Conflict Archaeology, Historical Memory, and the Experience of War
Beyond the Battlefield
University Press of Florida 2023
Mark Axel Tveskov and Ashley Ann Bissonnette's Conflict Archaeology, Historical Memory, and the Experience of War: Beyond the Battlefield (UP of Florida, 2023) presents approaches to the archaeology of war that move beyond the forensic analysis of battlefields, fortifications, and other sites of conflict to consider the historical memory, commemoration, and social experience of war. Leading scholars offer critical insights that challenge the dominant narratives about landscapes of war from throughout the history of North American settler colonialism.
Grounded in the empirical study of fields of conflict, these essays extend their scope to include a commitment to engaging local Indigenous and other descendant communities and to illustrating how public memories of war are actively and politically constructed. Contributors examine conflicts including the battle of Chikasha, King Philip’s War, the 1694 battle at Guadalupe Mesa, the Rogue River War, the Dakota-U.S. War of 1862, and a World War II battle on the island of Saipan. Studies also investigate the site of the Schenectady Massacre of 1690 and colonial posts staffed by Black soldiers.
Chapters discuss how prevailing narratives often minimized the complexity of these conflicts, smoothed over the contradictions and genocidal violence of colonialism, and erased the diversity of the participants. This volume demonstrates that the collaborative practice of conflict archaeology has the potential to reveal the larger meanings, erased voices, and lingering traumas of war.
Philip Blood is a British historian residing in Germany. His specialist research covers military culture, war, security, genocide and the Holocaust.