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Overview
Affiliations
AffiliationRoom numberTelephone
Assistant Professor in the Department of Archaeology224+44 (0) 191 33 41154
Member of the Institute of Medieval and Early Modern Studies  

Biography

I am an historical archaeologist working on colonialism, decolonisation, conflict and resistance in Southern Europe and in the Atlantic World, and committed to the ongoing struggle to decolonise the discipline. I studied History and Archaeology at the Universidade NOVA de Lisboa, where I obtained my BA (2005) and MA (2010), and later completed a PhD in Anthropology at Binghamton University (2017). I joined the Department of Archaeology as an Assistant Professor in Historical Archaeology in the summer of 2020, after having lived in Portugal, Brazil and the United States for several years. Prior to coming to Durham, I was a researcher with the Museu Paraense Emílio Goeldi in Brazil (2010), a Postdoctoral Research Associate at the Joukowsky Institute for Archaeology and the Ancient World, Brown University (2019-20), and a Postdoctoral Associate in the Cultural Heritage and Preservation Studies program at the Department of Art History, Rutgers University (2017-19). I am also affiliated with the Centre for Archaeology at the Universidade de Lisboa, where I have been a junior researcher funded by Portugal’s Foundation for Science and Technology.

Selected current projects

Cacheu Archaeological Project

This community-based project focuses on the foundation of Cacheu in today’s Republic of Guinea-Bissau and the development of power relations across economic, social, political, and cultural lines between the sixteenth and twentieth centuries. Our team is particularly interested in the material circumstances that enabled the transatlantic trade of enslaved people, as well as the variety of responses produced by communities along the Cacheu river basin. We are also interested in the legacies of colonialism, and how the heritage of slavery and forced labour is mobilised by communities and Guinea-Bissauan state agents in nation-building politics. Find out more here.

Heritage from Below. Drežnica: Traces and Memories 1941-1945 

Between 1941 and 1945, the region of Drežnica, in central Croatia, was occupied and repeatedly attacked by Axis forces. Italian fascists, Nazis and their local collaborators sought to suppress the resistance and dislodge partisan fighters from a vast network of camps, safe houses, and cave shelters across the forest. In this community-based project, our team aims to bring visibility to multi-temporal heritage practices enabled by experiences of collective pride, trauma and healing, and respond to current local demands for technical expertise. Click here to find out more.

Research interests

  • Historical archaeology
  • Archaeology of the contemporary past
  • Colonialism
  • Decolonisation
  • Conflict archaeology
  • Slavery and forced labour
  • Plantationocene
  • African diaspora
  • Politics of heritage
  • Critical heritage studies
  • Sensorial archaeology
  • Decolonial practices
  • Visual culture
  • Community archaeology

Research groups

Publications

Authored book

  • Coelho, Rui Gomes (2018). O Arqueólogo Cordial: A Junta Nacional da Educação e o Enquadramento Institucional da Arqueologia Portuguesa durante o Estado Novo (1936-1974). Imprensa de Ciências Sociais.

Chapter in book

  • Coelho, Rui Gomes (2021). Heritage and the Visual Ecology of the Plantationocene. In Heritage Ecologies. Bangstad, Torgeir Rinke & Pétursdóttir, Þóra Routledge. 350-368.
  • Coelho, Rui Gomes (2020). Como Descolonizar a Arqueologia Portuguesa? In Arqueologia em Portugal 2020: Estado da Questão. Arnaud, José Morais, Martins, Andrea & Neves, César Associação dos Arqueólogos Portugueses. 25-39.
  • Ayán Vila, Xurxo & Coelho, Rui Gomes (2020). Memoria y Paisaje de una Guerrilla Transfronteriza: Arqueología de la Resistencia Antifranquista en Galicia y el Norte de Portugal. In Postguerres / Aftermaths of War. Abelló i Güell, Teresa, Cattini, Giovanni C. Gavín Munté, Víctor, Ibarz Gelabert, Jordi, Santacana i Torres, Carles, Solé, Queralt & Vives, Antoni 1100-1117.
  • González-Ruibal, Alfredo, Franco Fernández, Manoel A., Rodríguez Simón, Pedro, Ayán Vila, Xurxo, Garfi, Salvatore, Coelho, Rui Gomes, Herrero, Xabier, Laíño Piñeiro, Alejandro, Marín Suárez, Carlos, Marquerie, Javier, Martínez Barrio, Candela, Ruiz Casero, Luis A., Santamarina, Josu, Señorán, José María & Vos, Julie de (2020). No Pasaron: Arqueología de la Batalla de Madrid (8-23 de Noviembre de 1936). In Arqueología de la Guerra Civil y la Dictadura Española. Pérez-Juez Gil, Ana & Morín de Pablos, Juan British Archaeological Reports. 33-48.
  • Coelho, Rui Gomes (2020). The Politics of Interpretation in Historical Archaeology. In Routledge Handbook of Global Historical Archaeology. Orser Jr., Charles E., Funari, Pedro Paulo A., Lawrence, Susan, Symonds, James & Zarankin, Andrés Routledge. 298-316.
  • Coelho, Rui Gomes (2015). An Empire of Clay: Ceramics and Discipline in the Early Modern Portuguese Empire. In Practicing Materiality. Van Dyke, Ruth M. University of Arizona Press. 100-123.
  • Coelho, Rui Gomes & Marques, Fernando (2013). Processo de contato e primórdios da colonização na baixa bacia do Amazonas (sécs. XVI-XVIII). In Velhos e Novos Mundos. Congresso Internacional de Arqueologia Moderna. Teixeira, André & Bettencourt, José A. CHAM. 1: 277-284.
  • Coelho, Rui Gomes (2005). Leiria num tempo de mudança: Aproximação à transição da Idade do Bronze Final para a Idade do Ferro. In Habitantes e Habitats – Pré e Proto-História na Bacia do Lis. Carvalho, Susana Câmara Municipal de Leiria. 118-134.

Doctoral Thesis

  • Coelho, Rui Gomes (2017). Sensorial Regime of ‘Second Slavery’ Landscape of Enslavement in the Paraíba Valley (Rio de Janeiro, Brazil). PhD.

Journal Article

  • Barreiros, Inês Beleza, Coelho, Rui Gomes, Marcos, Patrícia Martins & Pereira, Pedro Schacht (2021). The Unbearable Lightness of Anachronism: Practices of Monument-making and the Guardians of Historical Consensus. GSG Magazine for Contemporary Art and Social Issues 3: 180-195.
  • Coelho, Rui Gomes (2019). An Archaeology of Decolonization: Imperial Intimacies in Contemporary Lisbon. Journal of Social Archaeology 19(2): 181-205.
  • Coelho, Rui Gomes & Ayán Vila, Xurxo (2019). Cambedo, 1946: Carta sobre o Achamento de Portugal. Vestígios - Revista Latino-Americana de Arqueologia Histórica 13(2): 63-87.
  • Ayán Vila, Xurxo, Franco Fernández, Manoel A., Gago García-Brabo, Xosé, García Rodríguez, Sonia, Coelho, Rui Gomes, Laiño Piñeiro, Alejandro Martínez Valcárcel, Rosa, Otero Vilariño, Carlos, Porto Tenreiro, Yolanda, Rodríguez Simón, Pedro & Señorán Martín, José María (2018). Nas Orixes da Ribeira Sacra: A necrópole altomedieval do castro de San Lourenzo (Cereixa, A Pobra do Brollón, Lugo). Férvedes 9: 209-218.
  • Ayán Vila, Xurxo, Franco Fernández, Manoel A., Gago García-Brabo, Xosé, García Rodríguez, Sonia, Coelho, Rui Gomes, Laiño Piñeiro, Alejandro, Martínez Valcárcel, Rosa, Otero Vilariño, Carlos, Porto Tenreiro, Yolanda, Rodríguez Simón, Pedro & Señorán Martín, José María (2018). O castro de San Lourenzo (Cereixa, A Pobra do Brollón, Lugo): Unha coroa mineira romana no val do río Saa. Férvedes 9: 125-134.
  • Tejerizo García, Carlos, Fermín Maguire, Pedro Pablo, Coelho, Rui Gomes & Marín Suárez, Carlos (2017). ¿Excepción o Normalidad? Apuntes para una Arqueología de los Centros de Internamiento de Extranjeros (CIEs). Arqueogazte 7: 123-148.
  • Coelho, Rui Gomes (2016). The Garden of Refugees. Journal of Contemporary Archaeology 3(2): 261-270.
  • Gonzaga, Manuela & Coelho, Rui Gomes (2010). Alhandra: a greve de 8 e 9 de Maio de 1944. Cira 10: 177-200.
  • Coelho, Rui Gomes (2010). Telhais. Uma abordagem aos fabricos de cerâmica de construção em Alhandra (séculos XVIII-XX). Cira 10: 83-105.
  • Gonzaga, Manuela & Coelho, Rui Gomes (2005). Temos Fome! História 76: 42-47.

Other (Print)

  • Coelho, Rui Gomes (2021). The juniper tree. A conversation with Michael B. Schiffer and Randall H. McGuire. 28(1): 95-108.
  • Coelho, Rui Gomes & Hamilakis, Yannis (2021). An archaeologist of images: A conversation with Edouard Duval-Carrié and Anthony Bogues. 11(3): 311-333.
  • Coelho, Rui Gomes (2018). Topographies of Freedom. 10(1): 72-92.
  • Coelho, Rui Gomes (2016). Retratos para Después de una Guerra. 24-25.

Supervision students