By Mark Leone

What do archaeological excavations in Annapolis, Maryland, exhibit approximately way of life within the city's heritage? contemplating artifacts corresponding to ceramics, spirit bundles, printer's kind, and landscapes, this attractive, generously illustrated, and unique learn illuminates the lives of the city's residents--walking, seeing, interpreting, conversing, consuming, and residing jointly in freedom and in oppression for greater than 300 years. analyzing the result of probably the most leading edge tasks in American archaeology, The Archaeology of Liberty in an American Capital speaks powerfully to the fight for liberty between African americans and the bad.

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Annapolis is a long-term site of struggle for freedom and liberty, and it is worth seeing that struggle. The struggle was not only against the British, it was with one another. Annapolis is an arena for viewing the struggle, because it has made itself into a museum town. You can not see much of that struggle when you look today at Boston, Philadelphia, or New York. You can see parts— and famous ones at that—but they are often so altered that they look like stage sets. I am thinking of the strange setting of Faneuil Hall in Boston.

Marx and Althusser point out that the reverse is actually the case. Nature or the divine is made to look hierarchically ordered and social life is declared to be natural and an emanation of the natural or divine, or both. This mixes up the explanation for order by pointing people to the heavens or the woods, rather than to local circumstances and the immediate motivations of the rich. This is called a transparent or naturalizing ideology. Transparency comes because one hierarchy produces the other and they are both scaled; natural because cause is placed outside human control and, to some degree, beyond human understanding, but not beyond human admiration.

Today, about a quarter of the population of Annapolis is of African descent and about three-quarters of northwest European, Latin, and Asian descent. It has been a diverse town since the eighteenth century, and its culture should be expected to be as diverse as well. Archaeologically, it has certainly turned out to be. Many people in Annapolis of African descent were free, not slaves. This is a particularly important part of the city’s history, because freedom was neither easily obtained nor kept.

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