Grant TypeHunt Postdoctoral Fellowship
Institutional AffiliationNorth Carolina State U.
Grant numberGr. 9316
Approve DateOctober 4, 2016
Project TitleMcGill, Dr. Alicia, E. North Carolina State U., Raleigh, NC - To aid research and writing on 'A History of Heritage: Cultural Education, Community-based Archaeology, and Heritage Management in Belize' - Hunt Postdoctoral Fellowship
ALICIA E. McGILL, North Carolina State University, Raleigh, North Carolina, was awarded a Hunt Postdoctoral Fellowship in October 2016 to aid research and writing on ‘A History of Heritage: Cultural Education, Community-based Archaeology, and Heritage Management in Belize.’ Support allowed the completion of a manuscript for ‘Ruins and Recitations: Education, Colonization, and Heritage in Belize.’ This book examines how cultural heritage came to be constructed, controlled, transmitted, and negotiated through the contexts of archaeology (‘ruins’) and formal education (‘recitations’) in Belize. Drawing from critical heritage studies and theories of governmentality and development, this book demonstrates how Belizean institutions during the colonial period and following independence used heritage to manage difference, govern subjects and citizens, and reinforce development agenda, resulting in marginalized pasts and enduring racial and ethnic inequalities. But, this book is also a story of resistance and agency, which details how Belizean children and teachers in two Kriol African-descendant communities have responded to persistent colonial legacies. Utilizing historical and anthropological methods this book examines a web of factors that influence how heritage is constructed, preserved, and used in the present. The book draws from institutional primary sources (e.g. education reports, curricula, archaeological reports) and ethnographic data from participant observation in schools and interviews with curriculum designers and heritage officials to demonstrate how hegemonic ideas about race and ethnicity were established through over a century of schooling and archaeology. And, through close examinations of primary sources like community petitions, as well as contemporary cultural activities, interviews with teachers and youth, and youth drawings, this book reveals the agency of Belizean Kriol citizens as they resisted and transformed heritage ideologies.