AAA2020 Virtual Conference Banner 7 - 10 Dec

Translating Indigenous Voices into CHM Practices: A Practical Approach to being more Inclusive

Benjamin Proudfoot 

David Bunting, BHP
Jade Pervan, BHP
Annunziata Strano, BHP

More often than not heritage CHM practices in Australia fail to truly understand and incorporate Aboriginal voices/interpretations. Typically most CHM practices rely on archaeologist/heritage practitioners leading the process, with Aboriginal people brought in at the end to consult over the findings, both processes being mutually exclusive. These management practices are as a result of biases based on a colonial understanding of heritage and not necessarily aligned with the true nature or aspirations of Indigenous cultural heritage led management, where Indigenous people are at the centre of the process and CHM practices actually support the Indigenous knowledge/understanding. Although, Indigenous led CHM is still in its infancy in many parts of Australia, and even more so in areas with heavy development there are practical examples where it has not only been successful but in fact added more value to the whole process. This presentations talks about intermediate steps with practical examples that align to this future direction where heritage professionals and proponents truly listen to these voices at the inception of CHM practices and these voices are translated into on ground management of cultural heritage.

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