The next Illinois Valley Archaeological Society (IVAS) lecture will be Wednesday, December 5, 2012 at 7:00 p.m. where Dickson Mounds Museum will unveil a documentary originally prepared and intended for presentation on national public television. Created by a team of independent producers from Berkeley, California, the documentary "Who Owns the Past" details the period 1990-1992 when Dickson Mounds Museum became central to a national controversy over the treatment of human skeletal remains. The monthly program is held at the Dickson Mounds auditorium.
Initially this team gathered a wealth of background information from Dickson Mounds personnel and others in the academic community that held significant potential for addressing the concerns of activists and those of scientists and educators as well. However, as the documentary was prepared, its impartial treatment of opposing points of view faded, resulting in a biased, polarizing narrative that doomed its acceptance for airing over public television.
Never previously shown, the documentary "Who Owns the Past" opens for discussion the challenges that face scientific institutions across the country as they attempt to reconstruct the past and foster positive relationships with the Native American community.
IVAS programs are free of charge and the public is welcome. Meetings are held the first Wednesday of every month. For more information call 309.547.3721.