Landscape Archaeology Conference 2024: Call for Papers

Madrid, Spain, 10-14 June 2024 

Pluriversal landscapes: understanding people, heritage and ontological contestation (Session 31) 

J. Kelechi Ugwuanyi, 

Alejandro Mora-Motta, 

Emilia Schmidt, 

Julia Binter, 

Abstracts MUST be submitted electronically via the online submission system by the given deadline of 1 March 2024.


Landscapes hold the collective imprints of human and non-human interactions across time, encapsulated in what’s referred to as the “dwelling perspective” (Ingold 1993). This viewpoint regards landscapes as an enduring testimony to the lives and contributions of previous generations who resided within them. The idea of the “pluriverse” as outlined in recent works envisions a world in which diverse ontologies coexist, acknowledging the existence of manifold realities (cf. Escobar 2020). Building such a radically diverse world is considered a political endeavour, especially given our global challenges. However, the manner in which people live the records of themselves on the landscape differs from one place to another and, particularly in postcolonial settings, various ways of dwelling compete with each other in one place. The distinctions in how people coexist with their environments are shaped by diverse worlds that impact human and non-human interactions with the landscape. Such single or multiple ontologies interplay in the re-enactment of ancestral mandates, colonization, exploitation and negotiations of the living conditions of a people now and in the future. Consequently, the ‘pluriversal landscape’, we hold, is the presence of multiple dwellings of humans and non-humans with representative worlds, heritage and identity and the past and ongoing contestations, negotiations and ambivalences. Such multiple dwellings could be now or before, happening concurrently or at separate times, and it could be internal or external to the landscape. We draw from this thinking to interrogate how different groups of humans and non-humans imprint themselves on the landscapes, and what this means today and for the future. 

Our panel invites papers that engage the complexity of ‘pluriversal landscapes’ bearing in mind the following questions: How is a landscape ‘pluriversal’? How do ontological imprints on the landscapes create and impact processes of heritage and identity formation? How are heritage and identity processes re-enacted to show human and non-human connection to land? In what ways do dwellings include or exclude other worlds? How do humans and non-humans negotiate the tension, exclusion and/or conflicts that arise from pluriversal landscapes? How do economic extractivist activities articulate the ontological occupation of landscapes, and how do ‘living ontologies’ and ‘indigenous’ heritage contest/resist/adapt such occupation? How are different knowledges/narratives/perceptions manifested in the materiality of landscape, and how is landscape transformed? 

We aim to generate ideas on how landscapes with multiple, competing and silenced narratives, ways of dwelling and heritage and identity formation contribute to decolonial conversations. We aspire to explore the implications of this for the construction of pluriversal futures for various communities and the landscapes they dwell on. We welcome papers from a wide range of academic disciplines and regional perspectives. Accepted papers will be considered for a planned special issue publication in a journal after the conference. Submit an abstract to our session (31) through the conference website at 


Escobar, A. (2020). Pluriversal Politics: The Real and the Possible. Duke University Press. 

Ingold, T. (1993). The temporality of the landscape. World Archaeology, 25 (2): 152-174