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Archaeology - West Africa Register View Cart

In the modern West African state of Mali cultures such as the Bozo, Dogon and Bamako have traditionally recognized dynamic (ie shifting) territorial borders. In particular, land use by farmers, herders and hunter-gatherers was related to indigenous ideas of where tribal boundaries (including shared resources) were located, as well as to weather patterns and changing climate. Religion, ethnicity and language also played a central role in how people associated and understood their use of, and access to, land and water. Not least, magic was an influential sense-making system for Africans. But the imposition of static international boundaries by colonial powers like Britain and France in the 19th century resulted in a conflict between "modern" and traditional views of the possession, use and administration of land and water. Since much of what Africans thought about these matters was passed down the generations by oral cultures, there is no reliable written record of what they thought or what it meant to them. In this camp we excavate a site at the southern end of the Bandiagara escarpment in SW Mali where spectacular material evidence of what may be termed an African point of view has been found. Campers will be required to employ an array of challenging sense making systems to understand what was really going on at this site (near Djenne in modern Mali) with reference to Western concepts used in history, culture, geography and (of course!) archaeology. A good time learning will be had by all since this fascinating topic (not to mention its evidence!) is not often presented in Western countries.

Camp Information
  • Campers should arrive dressed for the weather, with appropriate footwear and a cap or hat.
  • Sunblock and kid-friendly bug dope may also be needed.
  • All campers should pack a hearty lunch, labeled drink and a snack.
  • Space is limited; please sign up early if you wish to have your children attend.
  • Head Instructor: Geoffrey Purcell
  • Aftercare: M-Th only, $30 until 5:15 pm. No early care available, drop off from 8:30 am. Contact the instructor,

COVID-19 Adjustments
  • For the safety of the campers we will make sure all campers:
  • Wear face masks
  • Maintain social distance
  • Monitor symptoms with parents
  • Frequently wash their hands
  • Each camper will be asked to comply with safety and hygiene decorum.
  • There will be abundant amounts of water, a cooling- off station and separate tables with which to keep Siblings WILL work together at their distinct ends of the dig and will give way to each other by turns: at such time as proximity might otherwise happen in order to maintain social distance. (Siblings can occupy the same spaces)
  • Meals, slide presentations and artifact processing will be done apart - dig teams will be working apart for this purpose unless they are siblings
  • Instructors will be practicing all of the above as well and will be keeping a written record of any incidents
  • All tools and surfaces will be washed down each day to insure the safety of the campers (Tables, tarps, tools, artifacts)

Register Activity Ages Grades Days Date/Time Fees
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Archaeology - West Africa FULL DAY 
7 - 14 N/A MTuWThF  08/23/2021 - 08/27/2021
9:00 AM - 4:00 PM

FMS Community Gardens
$280.00 R, $280.00 NR
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Archaeology - West Africa HALF DAY 
5 - 7 N/A MTuWThF  08/23/2021 - 08/27/2021
9:00 AM - 12:00 PM

FMS Community Gardens
$160.00 R, $160.00 NR
* Adjustments and discounts will be applied during checkout if applicable. *

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