A GLOBAL CONCERN

Click on the countries highlighted in red in the map for overviews of the situations there:


THE BLACK MARKET

*Due to its illicit nature it is impossible to quantify the exact size of the black market trade in antiquities.



95-99%

of the final price of a looted artifact is typically pocketed by middlemen and dealers.

127

NATIONS HAVE since 1970 AGREED TO combat the black market trade of antiquities

99%

ARCHAEOLOGISTS AGREED IN 2013 SURVEY THAT the black market for looted antiquities exists

REMOVING CULTURAL MATERIAL WITHOUT CONSENT IS AGAINST THE LAW IN ALMOST EVERY COUNTRY

Smuggled artifact returned to China was seized by U.S. Customs and Border Protection in “Operation Great Wall” (Photo: CBP)

90%

think laws should prevent importing artifacts from a country that does not want them exported.

96%

believe that there should be laws to protect archaeological resources.

85%

think people should be punished for taking artifacts from an archaeological site on publicly owned land.
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References

Atwood, Roger. 2004. Stealing History: Tomb Raiders, Smugglers, and the Looting of the Ancient World. New York: St. Martin’s Press.
Brodie, Neil. 2002. “Introduction.” In Illicit Antiquities: The Theft of Culture and the Extinction of Archaeology, edited by N. Brodie and K. Tubb, 1‐22. London: Routledge.
Coggins, Clemency. 1970. “The Maya scandal: how thieves strip sites of past cultures.” Smithsonian October:8-17.
Doelle, William H. 2003. “Back Sight: Quintessential Icons,” Archaeology Southwest 17.4:12.
Mulder, Stephennie. 2014. “The blood antiquities funding ISIL.” Al Jazeera (November 12, 2014).
National Park Service. 1906. American Antiquities Act of 1906, 16 USC 431‐433.
Polk, Kenneth. 2009. “Whither Criminology in the Study of the Traffic in Illicit Antiquities?” In Criminology and Archaeology: Studies in Looted Antiquities, edited by S. Mackenzie and P. Green, 13-26. Portland: Hart.
Proulx, Blythe Bowman. 2013. “Archaeological Site Looting in “Glocal” Perspective: Nature, Scope, and Frequency.” AJA 117:111-125.

Ramos, Maria and David Duganne. 2000. “Exploring Public Perceptions and Attitudes about Archaeology.” Report for the Society for American Archaeology conducted by Harris Interactive Inc.
Roosevelt, Christopher and Christina Luke. 2006. “Looting Lydia: The Destruction of an Archaeological Landscape in Western Turkey.” In Archaeology, Cultural Heritage, and the Antiquities Trade, edited by N. Brodie, M. Kersel, C. Luke, and K. Tubb, 173‐87. Gainesville: University Press of Florida.
UNESCO, 1970. Convention on the Means of Prohibiting and Preventing the Illicit Import, Export and Transfer of Ownership of Cultural Property.
Van Allen, Amy. 1995. “Native American Artifact Trade and Cultural Rights,” TED Case Studies 4.2: #216.
Wagner, Dennis. 2006. “Stolen artifacts shatter ancient culture: Looters ravage Indian ruins to sell pottery, heirlooms on black market.” The Arizona Republic (November 12, 2006).
Yohe, Robert M. 2004. “News from California State University, Bakersfield.” CSUBNews (April 5, 2004).

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