Images and Power

Rock Art and Ethics

  • Polly Schaafsma

Part of the SpringerBriefs in Anthropology book series (BRIEFSANTHRO)

Also part of the SpringerBriefs in Anthropology and Ethics book sub series (AAE)

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-xii
  2. Polly Schaafsma
    Pages 1-5
  3. Polly Schaafsma
    Pages 7-20
  4. Polly Schaafsma
    Pages 37-60
  5. Polly Schaafsma
    Pages 71-81
  6. Back Matter
    Pages 83-104

About this book


Images and Power: Rock Art and Ethics  addresses the distinctive ways in which ethical considerations pertain to rock art research within the larger context of the archaeological ethical debate. Marks on stone, with their social and religious implications, give rise to distinctive ethical concerns within the scholarly enterprise as different perceptions between scholars and Native Americans are encountered in regard to worldviews, concepts of space, time, and in the interpretation of the imagery itself. This discourse addresses issues such as the conflicting paradigms of oral traditions and archaeological veracity, differing ideas about landscapes in which rock art occurs, the intrusion of “desired knowledge”, and how the past may be robbed by changing interpretations and values on both sides. Case studies are presented in regard to shamanism and war-related imagery. Also addressed are issues surrounding questions of art, aesthetics, and appropriation of imagery by outsiders. Overall, this discourse attempts to clarify points of contention between Euro-American scholars and Native Americans so that we can better recognize the origins of differences and thus promote better mutual understanding in these endeavors.


American Indian rock art archaeology of rock art cultural landscapes of rock art ethics and American Indians ethics and archaeology rock art interpretation

Authors and affiliations

  • Polly Schaafsma
    • 1
  1. 1.Museum of New MexicoSanta FeUSA

Bibliographic information

  • DOI
  • Copyright Information Springer Science+Business Media New York 2013
  • Publisher Name Springer, New York, NY
  • eBook Packages Behavioral Science
  • Print ISBN 978-1-4614-5821-0
  • Online ISBN 978-1-4614-5822-7
  • Series Print ISSN 2195-0806
  • Series Online ISSN 2195-0814
  • Buy this book on publisher's site