ExN Blog

 The Blog Factor in Academia

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Twitter and blogs, and embarrassingly enthusiastic drunken conversations at parties, are not add-ons to academic research, but a simple reflection of the passion that underpins it.

(Tim Hitchcock)

Hosting a blog on a scientific journal can be a source of controversy among academics. It may sound like a frivolous distraction from the real work, revealing a too favorable attitude toward social media. However, as academics we are constantly asked to make our research more relevant to a wider audience, or in other words, to have an impact on contemporary society. Not surprisingly, the impact factor of a research is crucial when assessing the overall value of a project. And yet, much of the academic discourse is still relegated to small conversations among ourselves, professional seminars and confer

ences, book reviews and specialist hard copy press, inevitably ruling out the possibility of a broader social dialog. As rightly argued by Tim Hitchcock, professor of Digital History at the University of Sussex, “If there is a ‘crisis’ in the humanities, it lies in how we have our public debates, rather than in their content […] we need to remember that the role of the academic humanist has always been a public one – however mediated through teaching and publication. By building blogging, Twitter, Flickr, and shared libraries in Zotero, into our research programmes – into the way we work anyway – we both get more research done and build a community of engaged readers for the work itself.”

Academically a blogpost may well not be cited on its own right but certainly boosts citations for our work. A post reaches other researchers in our specific discipline, and because it is accessibly written, it travels well, gets re-tweeted and re-liked, reaching thus also academics outside our immediate sub-field and discipline, potentially attracting new and more varied audiences to our research.

Encouraging the dialogue between different disciplines, promoting a more socially and politically engaged archaeology and including a wider the audience into the archaeological debate, feature prominently among the objective pursued by Ex Novo. The decision of hosting a blog on our website goes exactly in this direction. In order to have impact, archaeology needs indeed to be public and being challenged beyond the academy.

To launch the ExN Blog we are glad to host the reflections of Lennart Kruijer (Leiden University) about the complex relationship between post-colonial instances within classical archaeology and the sometimes still-colonial practices embedded in this discipline, especially when it comes to fieldwork.

On Discipline and Place: Mediterranean fieldwork and Classical Archaeology between ‘The Devotee’ and ‘The Inner Colonial’

(by Lennart Kruijer)

On Discipline And Place

Mediterranean fieldwork and Classical Archaeology between The Devotee and The Inner Colonial (by Lennart Kruijer) You say there’s a lesson that you want to teach Well here I am baby, practice what you preach (Barry White) It is a peculiar species that migrates south each summer, clothed in khaki-coloured fieldwork trousers, leaving the temperate but
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Who Owns The Past? (Vol.2, 2017)

Who Owns the Past? Archaeological Heritage between Idealisation and Destruction (edited by M. Gori, M. Revello Lami, A. Pintucci) The second issue of Ex Novo hosts papers exploring the various ways in which the past is remembered, recovered, created and used. In particular, contributions discuss the role of archaeology in present-day conflict areas and its
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Introducing The ExN Blog

The Blog Factor in Academia (by M. Revello Lami) Hosting a blog on a scientific journal can be a source of controversy among academics. It may sound like a frivolous distraction from the real work, revealing a too favorable attitude toward social media. However, as academics we are constantly asked to make our research more
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Thracology And Nationalism In Bulgaria

(by Ivan Marinov  & Nicolas Zorzin) Thracology and Nationalism in Bulgaria. Deconstructing Contemporaneous Historical and Archaeological Representations   It is now widely acknowledged that Bulgarian academic discourses of the country’s so-called communist era (1945-1989) were heavily politicized with the aim of nationalizing and ethnicizing the history of the Bulgarian people. This communist era phenomenon subscribes
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Frontiers Of Romania

(by Emily R. Hanscam) Frontiers of Romania: Nationalism and the Ideological Space of the Roman Limes   Modern Romania is a nation-state containing space which has long been considered marginal – first as part of the Roman Empire and now within the European Union. The national narrative of Romania highlights this liminality, focusing on the
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The Rights Of Reproducing Cultural Heritage

(by Augusto Palombini) The rights of reproducing Cultural Heritage in the digital Era. An Italian Perspective   The spread of digital technology has led to a renewed phase within the debate on property rights in Cultural Heritage reproduction. This topic is addressed in different ways, but it is currently under discussion both in Europe and
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Reconstructing Cultural Heritage In Conflict Zones

(by Nour A. Munawar) Reconstructing Cultural Heritage in Conflict Zones: Should Palmyra be Rebuilt? Cultural heritage has fallen under the threat of being of damaged and/or erased due to armed conflicts, and destruction has increasingly become a major part of daily news all over the world. The destruction of cultural heritage has escalated in Syria
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Remembering Beirut

(by Caroline A. Sandes) Remembering Beirut: Lessons for Archaeology and (Post-) Conflict Urban Redevelopment in Aleppo The reconstruction of central Beirut after the Lebanese civil war by Solidere is not generally considered a success. It has resulted in a soulless, expensive and exclusive area aimed at tourists and wealthy overseas business people who have generally
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The Impact Of The Fall Of Communism On European Heritage (Vol.1, 2016)

(edited by M. Gori and V. Higgins) The first issue is concerned with quite a challenging topic, that is “The Impact of the Fall of Communism on European Heritage”:  it results from a regular session held at the 2014 Meeting of the European Association of Archaeologists in Istanbul. The proceedings are edited by Valerie Higgins
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Exploring Approaches To Italian Early Medieval Archaeology In Post Communist Europe

(by Giulia Vollono) In this paper I discuss the impact that the fall of the Berlin Wall and, subsequently, of communism in Europe, and the new socio-political arena that emerged in their aftermath had upon Italian Early Medieval Archaeology. The ultimate aim of this paper is to re-evaluate the latest developments in Italian archaeology from
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