RadioCIAMS: Bill Angelbeck on Modes of Production in the Pacific NW

net fishing

Historical net fishing in the Pacific Northwest.

On September 18, 2015, Bill Angelbeck (Douglas College) met with a panel of CIAMS faculty (Kurt Jordan) and students (Kathleen Garland, Perri Gerard-Little, Samantha Sanft, and Erin Wright) to discuss the application of modes of production analysis to anarchic societies, focusing on the Pacific Northwest. The recorded discussion of about an hour opens below.


NYSAA Talk – Cynthia Kocik

On October 1, 2015, Cynthia Kocik (Cornell University Dendrochronology Laboratory and CIAMS alumna) will present “Beams and Boards: Dating Historic Structures in New York State through Dendrochronology” at the monthly NYSAA meeting.

The meeting will take place at 6:30 p.m. at the Center for Natural Sciences (Ithaca College), room 208.

Driving directions:

From the main entrance of Ithaca College on Route 96B, proceed 3/4 around Alumni Circle and turn onto Grant Egbert Blvd.  Drive straight until you see a sign for Textor Circle.  Turn right on Textor Circle, then turn left twice into Blue Lot O.  Walk up the outdoor stairs alongside the Park School.  CNS is a large red brick building on your right.  Walk under the covered walkway to the entrance on your right.  Go through the double glass doors and up the stairs immediately to your left to 208.

RadioCIAMS: Aaron Burke on the Egyptian fortress at Jaffa

Reconstruction of the entry gate to the Egyptian fortress. Photo credit: Martin Peilstöcker (The Jaffa Cultural Heritage Project)

Reconstruction of the entry gate to the Egyptian fortress. Photo credit: Martin Peilstöcker (The Jaffa Cultural Heritage Project)

On September 9, 2015 Aaron Burke (Near Eastern Languages and Cultures, UCLA),  met a panel of CIAMS students (Jenny Carrington, Gabby Borenstein, Jess Pfundstein, Andrew Crocker), faculty (Chris Monroe), and researchers (Brita Lorentzen) to discuss his excavations at the Late Bronze Age Egyptian fortress at Jaffa, in present-day Israel. He also gave a CIAMS lecture the evening prior. The recorded discussion of about 45 minutes opens below.



The History Center Talks – Kurt Jordan

jordan tchc talkOn Saturday, September 19th, 2015 at 2:00 PM, The History Center in Tompkins County hosted Professor Kurt Jordan for his presentation “Destroyed, Forgotten, Never Noted: Ithaca’s Hidden Indigenous History.” Kurt A. Jordan is an Associate Professor of Anthropology and American Indian Studies at Cornell University. His research centers on the archaeology and history of Haudenosaunee (Iroquois) peoples, emphasizing the settlement patterns, housing, and economies of 17th and 18th century Senecas.

Kurt Jordan speaks at the History Center. Photo credit: Amanda Bosworth, The Cornell Chronicle.

Kurt Jordan speaks at the History Center. Photo credit: Amanda Bosworth, The Cornell Chronicle.

Many observers have noted that little is understood about the history of indigenous peoples in the Ithaca area. This presentation both describes why this is the case, and summarizes what is known. Starting with the earliest American settlers, past Ithacans took a cavalier attitude toward the indigenous archaeological record. Mingling curiosity with disrespect for indigenous heritage, Ithacans documented almost nothing as the archaeological record was destroyed. Despite this sordid history, quite a bit can be gleaned about how the Cayugas and their allies and ancestors dwelled on these lands.

Jordan has conducted archaeological fieldwork in collaboration with members of the Seneca Nation of Indians since 1999. His first book, The Seneca Restoration, 1715-1754: An Iroquois Local Political Economy, was published by the University Press of Florida in 2008.

Professor Jordan’s lecture was reported in the Cornell Chronicle on September 21, 2015.

The History Center in Tompkins County
401 E. State St. #100
Ithaca, NY 14850

The History Center Talks – Fred Gleach

artifactsJoin us at The History Center in Tompkins County on Thursday, September 17th, 2015 at 6:00 PM for the presentation “With Respect to Native American Artifacts” with Professor Fredric Wright Gleach.

Professor Gleach is a Senior Lecturer and the Curator of the Anthropology Collections at Cornell University. Best known for his work focused on the Powhatan Indians of Virginia, he has also done archaeological work in Illinois and Spain, and archival and ethnographic studies on Puerto Rico and Puerto Ricans in the US. He grew up in Richmond, Virginia, completed graduate studies at the University of Chicago, and has lived in Ithaca for over 20 years.

“With Respect to Native American Artifacts” will feature a selection of artifacts from the collections of Cornell and The History Center. Prof. Gleach will lead the audience through an exploration of topics including:
— How one recognizes, identifies, and interprets artifacts
— How North American indigenous peoples work with natural materials
— How traditional practices continue into the present
— Where one might turn to learn more

Job Listing – Assistant Professor, Bioarchaeology

Position Title: Assistant Professor – Bioarchaeology
Position Type: Tenure-track faculty
Application Deadline: November 1, 2015

The Department of Anthropology at Cornell University invites applications for a tenure-track faculty position focused in bioarchaeology. We construe bioarchaeology broadly to include a range of approaches to understanding the human body in its material setting both historically and theoretically. The ideal candidate will help to strengthen links among departmental research interests in archaeology, biological anthropology, and medical anthropology. We seek candidates who ground their biological interests in archaeological field work and whose research involves a concern with archaeological context, innovative approaches to theoretical interpretation, and sensitivity to the ethics of practice. Although we have a particular interest in applications from candidates conducting research in Latin America (including the Caribbean) and Asia, geographic area of expertise is open.

For the full listing and to submit an application, please visit the posting on Academic Jobs Online.

CIAMS Lecture Series: Bill Angelbeck

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.

Angelbeck poster (small)


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.