An Intellectual Necropolis.

October 26, 2011 at 8:14 pm (Uncategorized)

My Uncle, a retired archaeologist who taught at Cambridge, asked me to type up a couple of e-mails to his archaeologist buddies when I was over at his place for the weekend.

In one of them, he wrote about the discovery of certain Aryan graves in the native hometown my family hails from.

He wrote about how an illegal exhumation specialist employed by a rich, influential man had come across the Aryan graves and had found in it antimony, bangles, beads, pottery, and other such trinkets that dated back to the Iron Age.

I then asked my Uncle a question. Why are you an archaeologist?

He smiled, and replied back after a little rumination.

‘Well, for the sake of knowledge. All knowledge is beneficial.

In retrospection, I remember sneering at such a notion- to myself, of course. Is it necessary to think for more than one second about why such a design existed on a certain 18th century balustrade, or what could be deciphered from the various carvings over pottery discovered from an exhumation? The past- something that has passed and that is no longer of significance- how much has it changed the world?

In short, how has archaeology saved the world over 6 billion homo sapiens call their home?

I would understand if it was actual spiritual or monetary or philosophical knowledge that was being preserved and hunted down so voraciously. But dates and piles of crumbled rock in Akra is not worth spending decades of study on, even if you were a quixotic fool who wanted to pursue every other romantic, nonsensical calling your mind thought of.

You, ye olde archaeologist, are part of that cycle that supports powerful, filthy rich aristocrats who are greedy for more money to uproot graveyards and sell their contents to your museums and establishments. You study things that have never existed– centaurs, kappas, gargoyles and faux religions; what part of your profession will help you when you yourself have to depart from this world; your body crumbled and worn down like the old murals you would meticulously study? 

The resurrection is near.


1 Comment

  1. Mendaxxx said,

    A little note that I didn’t know where to put up:

    The post above is not targeted towards one person. It is about everyone who supports meaningless careers (and meaningless careers themselves!); and was written with the design that awareness and more thought should be given to stuff we invest our lives in. I reiterate, it is not an attack against one particular person! (:

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