Heather Law Pezzarossi
Assistant Professor, Anthropology Department
Anthropological Theory ANT 311
Introduction to Cultural Anthropology ANT 111
Introduction to Archaeology and World Pre-History ANT 141
Archaeology of and in the Modern World ANT 145
Archaeology of the Native Northeast ANT 300
People and Cultures of North America ANT/NAT 323
Laboratory Methods in Archaeology ANT 444/644
Representations of Indigeneity in Popular Culture ANT/NAT 456/656
Contemporary Native North American Issues ANT/NAT 459/659
Native Americans and Museums ANT/NAT 461/661
Highest degree earned
Ph.D., University of California, Berkeley, 2014
Heather Law Pezzarossi is an anthropologically trained archaeologist. She does collaborative work with Indigenous communities in the North America, focusing on community-led heritage and archaeological projects that address the past, especially the colonial past, through methods and theories that serve Indigenous communities in the present and for the future.
She has worked with the Hassanamisco Nipmuc Community in southern New England for over ten years, beginning with excavations at the Burnee/Boston Homestead Site in what is today Grafton, Massachusetts. The Burnee/Boston Homestead was a central gathering place and hub of Nipmuc community in the late 18th- and early 19th-centuries and this site, once under threat of development, is now part of a contemporary Nipmuc heritage landscape. Law Pezzarossi co-wrote "Historical Archaeology and Indigenous Collaboration: Nipmuc Histories with Futures" (University Press of Florida, 2020) about this and other community-led projects with colleagues D. Rae Gould, Holly Herbster and Stephen Mrozowski. It was awarded the Society for American Archaeology’s Scholarly Book Prize in 2021.
Law Pezzarossi also co-edited a volume titled "Indigenous Persistence in the Colonized Americas: Material and Documentary Perspectives on Entanglement" (University of New Mexico Press, 2019) with Rusell Sheptak that focuses on expanding archaeology’s understanding of Indigenous persistence in the face of long-term colonial occupation.
Today, Law Pezzarossi continues to work with the Nipmuc community, critiquing the colonial heritage landscape in southern New England and unpacking the cumulative impacts the messaging on roadside signage, monuments and historical places have had on settler understandings of Nipmuc people. She is part of several projects to make appropriate Nipmuc places, and especially vibrant 18th-, 19th- and 20th-century histories, more visible to everyone in southern New England.
Areas of Expertise
Law Pezzarossi, H., R. Gould, and S. Mrozowski. (in press). Monumentalizing Nipmuc Heritage and Emplacing Indigenous Presence. In Routledge Handbook of the Archaeology of Indigenous-Colonial Interaction in the Americas. L. Panich and S. Gonzalez, eds. New York: Routledge.
Law Pezzarossi, H. (2020). Movement and the Nipmuc Landscape. In Historical Archaeology and Indigenous Collaboration: Nipmuc Histories with Futures. D. R. Gould, H. Herbster, H. Law- Pezzarossi and S. Mrozowski eds. Gainesville, FL, University Press of Florida.
Law Pezzarossi, H. and S. Mrozowski. (2020). The Archaeology of Hassanamesit Woods. In Historical Archaeology and Indigenous Collaboration: Nipmuc Histories with Futures. D. R.Gould, H. Herbster, H. Law Pezzarossi and S. Mrozowski eds. Gainesville, FL, University Press of Florida.
Law Pezzarossi, H. and R. Sheptak. Eds. (2019). Santa Fe, NM, University of New Mexico Press.
Law Pezzarossi, H. (2019). Brewed Time: Considering Anachronisms in the Study of Indigenous Persistence in New England. In Indigenous Persistence in the Colonized Americas: Material and Documentary Perspectives on Entanglement. H. Law Pezzarossi and R. Sheptak eds. Santa Fe, NM, University of New Mexico Press.
Law Pezzarossi, H and R. Sheptak. (2019). Introduction to Indigenous Persistence in the Colonized Americas. In Indigenous Persistence in the Colonized Americas: Material and Documentary Perspectives on Entanglement. H. Law Pezzarossi and R. Sheptak eds. Santa Fe, NM, University of New Mexico Press.
Law Pezzarossi, H. (2015). Native Basketry and the Dynamics of Social Landscapes in Southern New England. In Things in Motion: Object Histories, Biographies and Itineraries. R. Joyce and S. Gillespie eds. Santa Fe, NM, School for Advanced Research Press.
Mrozowski, S.A., R. Gould, H. Law Pezzarossi (2015). Rethinking Colonialism: Indigenous Innovation and Colonial Inevitability. In Rethinking Colonialism: Comparative Archaeological Approaches. K. Howlett-Hayes and C. Cipolla eds. Gainsville, FL, University Press of Florida.
Law Pezzarossi, H. (2014). A Steely Gaze: my captivation with the American Tintype. In Object Stories: Artifacts and Archaeologists. S. Brown, A. Clark and U. Fredrick eds. Walnut Creek, CA, Left Coast Press.
Law Pezzarossi, H. (2014). Assembling Indigeneity: Rethinking Innovation, Tradition and Indigenous Materiality in a 19th c. Native Toolkit. Journal of Social Archaeology 14(3):340-360.
Pezzarossi, G., J. R. Kennedy, H. B. Law (2012). "Hoe Cakes and Pickerel”: Cooking Traditions and Community at a Nineteenth Century Nipmuc Farmstead. The Menial Art of Cooking: Archaeological Studies of Cooking and Food Preparation. S. Graff and E. Rodriguez-Alegria eds. Boulder, CO, University of Colorado Press.