Film/Documentary Title: “Science or Sacrilege: Native Americans, Archaeologists, and the Law”

by | Mar 30, 2022 | Anthropology

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Film/Documentary Title:
“Science or Sacrilege: Native Americans, Archaeologists, and the Law”
Directed by: Nicholas Nicastro/Berkeley Media, 1996 | Length: 58 minutes
About the Film
“Well into the 20th century, Native American physical remains were frequently harvested like trophies, and ritual objects and artwork often reached museums under questionable circumstances. Such glaring offenses of “imperial archaeology” ultimately motivated Congress to pass the Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act (NAGPRA) in 1990. This provocative, in-depth documentary examines the Act’s underlying moral and political issues, its practical consequences, and the prospects for science in the post-NAGPRA world. Some (though not all) archaeologists and scientists claim that NAGPRA will prevent important study and research. Native Americans say that no one has the right to dig up and examine their ancestors’ remains. Divergent realities of power, responsibility, and history make the debate vociferous, and simple answers impossible. This unique video is sure to provoke discussion and raise awareness in all courses in anthropology, archaeology, Native American studies, and museum studies. “
Guidelines for Papers
The Films Discussions and Expository Essays must be in MLA format as follows:
1-inch margin on all four (4) sides of the paper
12 size text, Times New Roman font
double-spaced
in the upper left-hand corner should be your name, the instructor’s name, course information, date, and assignment
in the upper-right corner should be a header with your last name and page number
All work turned in must demonstrate a sincere effort on the student’s part to construct a clear thesis and develop an argument logically in a well-organized essay, with support of major points by specific examples and quotations from the text. Ideally, a student’s work should present fresh, creative approaches based on his/her own ideas. All work should be free of mechanical errors and be thoroughly proofread.
Assignment Instructions
This assignment requires you to write 500 to 600 words (2 to 2 2/3 pages paper).
You need to show command of the information provided in the film and use Anthropology terms.
Film Prompt
NAGPRA legislation was created in 1990 to repatriate native human remains. Archaeologists, physical/biological anthropologists, and native Americans discuss the consequences of such legislation in this in-depth documentary. Provide a summary of each of their claims and comment on why you agree or disagree with this legislation.
Link to FILM: https://search.alexanderstreet.com/view/work/bibliographic_entity%7Cvideo_work%7C3217068?account_id=10902&usage_group_id=104858

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