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  • 1.  Repatriation/decolonization experience

    Posted 10-03-2022 12:15 PM
    Hi Great Ones!

    I have an intern who is working on a project regarding repatriation/decolonization subjects.  I myself have never been involved in repatriation, but the collection I currently manage will (at least) need to be reviewed for the possibility.

    Is there anyone who I could point her toward that either has been involved or consulted on such projects?


    Lana Newhart-Kellen
    Collections & Facilities Manager
    Purdue University Galleries
    West Lafayette IN

  • 2.  RE: Repatriation/decolonization experience

    Posted 10-04-2022 08:35 AM
    Brandie Macdonald, at the Museum of Us in San Diego.

    Avi Decter, History Now

  • 3.  RE: Repatriation/decolonization experience

    Posted 10-04-2022 09:10 AM
    Hi Lana,

    Can you explain a bit more about what you mean by your intern is working on a repatriation/decolonization subjects project. Is this a class project or a capstone project? Repatriation means many things, based on my experience. 

    For your collections, are there items that you think would be potentially subject to NAGPRA? We are happy to discuss this more with you.


    Christopher Caseldine, PhD, RPA
    Curator of Collections
    Center for Archaeology and Social Change Repository
    Assistant Research Professor
    School of Human Evolution and Social Change
    Arizona State University

  • 4.  RE: Repatriation/decolonization experience

    Posted 10-04-2022 09:53 AM

    She is interested in repatriation/decolonization.  As I have had no real experience with it, and as we talked, I realized she and I were in the same boat. 


    It is neither a class nor a capstone project.  It's part of a larger collections project of identifying what we have.  (While the intern will assist with the project, she is not the lead on it.  We have a curator position that will oversee it.)


    I assigned her the project as we do have some potentially culturally sensitive pieces which will need to be addressed.  Her task right now is to define repatriation and decolonization, identify what are their differences and what do they have in common.  From my perspective her research will help establish a course of action.


    As I have never been involved in repatriation, I thought she should talk to someone who has.


    Lana Newhart-Kellen

    Collections & Facilities Manager/Purdue Galleries

    Patti & Rusty Rueff School of Design, Art & Performance

    Harrison Hall

    107 MacArthur Drive

    West Lafayette IN 47906

    765-496-2816 (Newhart-Kellen, Lana J)


  • 5.  RE: Repatriation/decolonization experience

    Posted 10-05-2022 10:34 AM
    Lana, Decolonization is a process there is much to learn and it starts at a personal level. My best advice is that all of you who will be involved need to start down the path of learning and building both knowledge and relationships. I hesitate to even list any readings as there are so many and I am not an expert and don't want to confuse what is already a challenging process. Our Decolonizing Museums in Practice course is beginning this week and runs for the next 8 weeks. We have three amazing instructors.
    Let me know if you have any questions.

    Bradford Bredehoft
    Museum Study, LLC

  • 6.  RE: Repatriation/decolonization experience

    Posted 10-04-2022 09:19 AM
    You can give her/him my contact info.  We did this about a decade ago at the Slater Museum (also an academic museum) with lithic objects; mostly stone tools from the around the continental U.S.


  • 7.  RE: Repatriation/decolonization experience

    Posted 10-04-2022 11:23 AM

    Hi Lana,
    I am part of the NAGPRA Community of Practice and we are a group for all people engaged in or interested in NAGPRA. I've also been doing NAGPRA work for 11 years now. I'd be happy to talk to your intern and perhaps point them to other folks to talk to as well.




    Anne Amati
    NAGPRA Coordinator/Registrar

    University of Denver Museum of Anthropology




    I am part of the NAGPRA Community of Practice. Learn more