Bravo to Prof. Barbara Voss, an archaeologist from Stanford University, for bravely calling out, documenting, and condemning the many cases of discrimination, harassment, abuse and misconduct in archaeological research. In fact, she shows that unfortunately, this is almost epidemic in character. Too often, young student and scholars, as well as members of various minority groups are highly represented among the victims. No less important, Prof. Voss goes on to suggest methods to stop this culture of harassment.
In two articles in American Antiquity, one documenting the phenomenon and one suggesting how to stop and prevent this (both of which were nicely summarized here), I believe that Prof. Voss makes a very important contribution to the field of archaeology in general.
On a personal level, I must state that from the very beginning of the Tell es-Safi/Gath Archaeological Project, one of my primary objectives (as the director), in addition to carrying out top-notch research, was to create a safe, friendly and non-threatening environment, in the field and in the lab, for all participants of the project. People of all backgrounds and lifestyles were always welcome and encouraged to learn, research and grow, and this enabled the creation of a safe and friendly, multi-cultural environment, one in which all participants could feel comfortable – and not feel threatened in any way. I believe this is the way archaeological research (and life in general) should be conducted!
Once again, I congratulate Prof. Voss on her important and groundbreaking publications!
HT: Jack Sasson