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In the summer of 1996, Will Thomas and Dave Deacy were wading in the Columbia River in Kennewick, Washington, watching the annual hydroplane races. Will kicked something with his foot, bent down and pulled something up. It was a human skull. Turns out, it was a really old skull — 9,000 years old, one of the oldest human remains found in North America. It’s a discovery that would fuel an ongoing debate between scientists and Native Americans about how ancestral remains should be treated. It also inspired Beth Piatote, an associate professor of Native American studies at UC Berkeley and a member of the Nez Perce tribe, to write the play Antíkoni. It’s a Native American version of the Greek tragedy, Antigone.

See photos and read the story on Berkeley News.

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