Photo credit: Matthew Devitt (ASU)
The Cornell Departments of Anthropology and CIAMS present
University of Arizona
Migration, Skill, and the Transformation of Social Networks in the Prehispanic Southwest
Friday, February 19
McGraw Hall 165
This event is free and open to the public. A reception will follow the talk.
Dr. Mills’s Bibliography:
I am an anthropological archaeologist with broad interests in archaeological method and theory, especially (but not exclusively) as applied to the North American Southwest. My work has focused on ceramic analysis as a tool for understanding production, distribution, and consumption but more broadly is my interest in material culture to understand social relations in the past. My research on ceramic technology, craft specialization, and accumulations research led to a series of papers and edited volumes on social inequality, identity, feasting, and migration. These interests were fostered by more than a decade of work in the Silver Creek area of east-central Arizona, including a multi-year collaborative project with the White Mountain Apache Tribe. I also have field and research experience in a number of other areas of the Southwest including Zuni, Chaco, Mimbres, Grasshopper, and most recently the Greater Hohokam area. Outside the U.S. I have research experience in Guatemala (Postclassic Maya), Kazakhstan (Bronze Age), and Turkey (Neolithic). Besides ceramics I am interested in depositional practice, and how that can be used to understand memory, materiality, and relational logics. Currently I am a PI on the Southwest Social Networks Project, which brings together data and a talented group of scholars to apply social network analysis (SNA) to archaeological data from a large area of the western Southwest. This ongoing project continues my interest in looking at the dynamics of social relations from a multiscalar perspective.
A commitment to decolonization requires fundamental shifts in the way we make, teach, and share new knowledge. Transforming research from an extractive, often exploitative endeavor toward a practice that contributes to healing and community-well being is one of the key challenges of our time for those in the academy today. Drawing on five recent archaeology and heritage-related projects carried out in partnership with Native American and Turkish communities, I share the exciting possibilities of community-based research practices along with the complexities, contradictions, and impediments involved in doing engaged and activist scholarship. From complex ethical dilemmas and our need for revised IRB processes, to enhancing our skill sets in collaborative, participatory planning and knowledge mobilization strategies – I’ll discuss both the promise and perils involved in transforming research through a community-based approach.
On Thursday, October 15, Dr. John Cherry (Joukowsky Institute for Archaeology and the Ancient World) will present “Archaeology Under the Volcano: Survey and Landscape Archaeology on Montserrat, 2010-2015.” The lecture will take place at 4:30 p.m. in Goldwin Smith Hall, G22. A reception will follow the talk.
On September 8, 2015, Dr. Aaron Burke gave a lecture on “The Egyptian New Kingdom Fortress in Jaffa” based on the past several years of excavation at the site of Jaffa in present-day Israel.
On Thursday, September 17, Dr. Bill Angelbeck (Douglas College) will speak on “Applying Modes of Production Analysis to Non-State, or Anarchic, Societies” based on his research in the American Northwest.
The concept of modes of production has been a constructive form of analysis for chiefdom and state societies archaeologically. Here, I consider the analysis of modes of production among complex hunter-gatherers such as the Coast Salish. As first applied by Marx (and later by Eric Wolf), the analysis involved a large-scale approach to historical epochs concerning economy, tying together the means of production (tools) to the relations of production (sociopolitical organization). Yet, conceived at an epochal scale, the utility for archaeologists working within the Northwest Coast is rather generalized (e.g., “kinship mode of production”), without much explanatory power. Here, I offer that the analysis of modes of production can be effective if we apply it not broadly to characterize entire epochs but towards economies at the microscale, assessing seasonal rounds. In the Coast Salish past, this reveals socioeconomic modes of production that are multifaceted annually and over time.
Cornell Fulbright Scholar (Anthropology) Sergey Makhortykh, “The Scythians of the North Black Sea Region,” Wed April 29, 2015 at 4:30 pm in G22 Goldwin Smith Hall. The nomadic Scythians of Ukraine are the subject of ever increasing scientific and public interest. This presentation explores their history and culture as well as their contacts with the outside world. Reception with food and drink in the Art History Lounge to follow.
CIAMS Lecture: Steven Wernke (Anthropology Vanderbilt U.), “Paradoxes of Place Production at a Planned Colonial Town in Highland Peru,” Thurs Mar 26 at 5 pm in G22 Goldwin Smith Hall. Dr. Wernke studies community organization, landscape and the transformation of religious forms and practices during prehispanic and colonial times in the Andes.
Benjamin Arbuckle (Anthropology, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill), “Exploring the origins, spread, and diversity of Neolithic animal economies in SW Asia.” Monday March 16, 2015 at 5 pm in G22 Goldwin Smith Hall. Arbuckle’s research addresses topics ranging from the origins and spread of domestic livestock in the Neolithic to the social and economic uses of animals in early complex societies. He directs the ‘Central Anatolian Pastoralism Project,’ and has worked at Çadır Höyük, Acemhöyük, Köşk Höyük, and Direkli Mağarası (all in Turkey).