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After reviewing what constitutes preventive archaeology, I propose mobilizing, for this field of activity, the notion of an ethics of care. This notion is polysemous and has ethical, sociological and political dimensions. It does not remain theoretical but is instead rooted in reality and in the full diversity of practices. An ethics of care can offer new avenues for reflection and action for archaeologists, but also for supervisory staff and the various archaeology institutions to gain a new understanding of the behaviours, discourses, practices and practical needs of archaeologists. Over the past twenty years, archaeologists have had to integrate the presence of multiple professional risk factors, in the face of which attitudes and discourse have varied between responsibility, prevention and sometimes denial. Archaeologists work in a variety of terrains where their bodies and practices intersect and reflect their “embedded” relationships in archaeological sites and remains. Archaeologists’ field areas are also places of sociability where their professional identities and collective histories are built, which are a very powerful glue for the functioning of their social groups. The importance of these interdependent relationships is also emphasized by an ethics of care.
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