public archaeology to me means that archaeologist are working on public land to preserve or excavate archaeological sites or as in our case trying to map out a cemetery. however, archaeology has both practice and theory, in practice it is a fairly new field of study that is gaining traction. public archaeology may be an umbrella term that encompasses various political, socio-economic, and of course public aspects, as quoted from the article. “Holtford Archaeology is a brand! The meaning of Archaeology in contemporary popular culture “offers three models for the practice of public archaeology: The ‘education model’ , the ‘public relations model’, and the ‘democratic model’. The ‘education model’ suggest that archaeologist need to support the public to ‘come see both the past and the occupation of the archaeologist in the same terms as the professional archaeologist themselves’. (The meaning of archaeology in contemporary culture. Oxford: Archaeopress). The ‘public relations model’ suggest that an increase in social, economic and political support for the professional archaeological sector will arrive only if the archaeologist can improve their public image.”
Public archeology does not just fall into one specific category but several, and as far as theory goes, it varies, because archaeology is also political, theories may vary from country some coountries may be more lenient in the way that public archaeologist carry out their work, while other countries may be more oppressive and leave little to no input on the public archaeologist input on how the archaeological work should be carried out. a quote from the articles states the following about theory in public archaeology “Differing theoretical approaches to archaeology can be found in different countries, depending on the history of the foundation of the national disciplinary tradition. These approaches have developed alongside the socio-economic and political circumstances under which publicly accessible and publicly understandable archaeology takes place, ad is subject to policy, which varies from nation to nation”. Our cemetery project align with this in both practice and theory for the following reasons. Dr. Rowe mentioned that they city of Edinburg reached out to map the public cemetery. they gave permission to do public archaeological work, the city was concerned that there are many unmarked graves which allows the public sector to work with public archaeologist for a common goal, to reunite families with their deceased loved ones.
The lines of investigation that I am interested in pursuing is finding out exactly how many graves are unmarked. Because it comes to show just how poverty we have in the Rio Grande Valley. Dying is a very expensive process, and to get buried it includes funeral services that are estimated at ten thousand dollars including the casket and burial. plenty of families do not have the financial stability to lay to rest their loved ones. which is why i am interested in seeing just how many graves there are that are unclaimed. because, there might be a correlation between poverty and the number of unmarked graves there are in the Hope Cemetery. with any luck our group might be able to mark the graves.