54 NEW InVESTiGATiOnS OF An OLD CiTY: RESEArcH AT SiSUPALGArH, InDiA Monica L. Smith and R.K. Mohanty (Print Version Only) 60 EXTrEME ArcHAEOLOGY: RESEArcH in THE TArAPAcÁ VALLEY, NOrTHErn CHiLE Ran Boytner, Ioanna Kakoulli, and Maria Cecília Lozada 68 BETWEEn HEAVEn AnD HELL in AnciEnT UrKESH Giorgio Buccellati and Marilyn Kelly-Buccellati 74 81 A CULTUrAL HEriTAGE CEnTEr in THE DESErT Willeke Wendrich CELEbrATinG 40 YEArS OF COnTribUTiOn AnD AcTiViTiES Marilyn Beaudry-Corbett


60 74
28 83 85 88 98 102 108 111 Reflections on Research Between the Lines Recent Cotsen Publications Faculty Profiles Laboratory Profiles Recent Faculty Publications Grants and Awards Donor Honor Roll
Backdirt: Annual Review

2 4 7 8 9 10 16 18 22 Student News Visiting Scholar Profiles Graduate Student Profile Distinguished Alumnus Donor Profile Director’s Council Profile Field Notes Milestones Institute News



New Archaeology Program students
By Magda Yamamoto
We extend our welcome to the five new students who joined our Archaeology Program in Fall 2006, and to the two new students studying archaeology through the Department of Anthropology. Amy Cordner studied Classics at Mount Holyoke College. Her regional focus is Greece, where she wants to address the archaeology of ritual (which would also include mortuary practices) and assess whether religious changes reflect other changes in society. She is also interested in the economic and political drives behind rituals. Last summer she excavated a historic cemetery (1800s) in Los Angeles, which proved to be a helpful, firsthand introduction to mortuary practices. Kuei-Chen Lin is an international student from Taiwan. She has interdisciplinary training in both archaeology and computer science. Her research interests focus mainly on applying scientific and analytic methods to solve archaeological problems. Her M.A. work exploits a jigsaw puzzle algorithm, known as an artificial intelligence (AI) method, to facilitate the study of oracle bones. This would further benefit the understanding of the ancient Chinese writing system and social life recorded on these objects. She plans to concentrate on East Asian archaeology, particularly the application of A.I. in this research area as well as the history of science and technology. Joanna Potenza received her B.A. in Anthropology with a minor in Religious Studies from Vassar College. During her undergraduate studies, she became interested in Bronze Age Cycladic archaeology while participating in the College Year in Athens program. She will continue studying the Bronze Age under the direction of Sarah Morris (Steinmetz Professor of Classical Archaeology and Material Culture). Tina Ross came from Canada with a B.A. in Classics from Brock University and an M.A. in Classical archaeology from the University of Victoria. Her M.A. thesis title was “Winged Representations of the Soul in Greek Art from the Late Bronze Age through the Classical Period.” Her main interests lie in Bronze Age and Early Iron Age Greece with emphasis on pottery. She has also studied ancient Greek and Latin
Backdirt: Annual Review

extensively and plans to continue doing so at UCLA. She has excavated throughout the Mediterranean, most recently at Gordion in Turkey. Bethany Simpson received her B.A. from UC Berkeley in Classics, and has just come off a stint at the University of Pennsylvania studying Latin and Greek, and working for the Advanced Papyrological Information System (APIS) project. She came to UCLA with an interest in Greco-Roman era Egypt — especially the Fayum portrait mummies — and in studying religious and cultural syncretism of the time. Catherine Bailey is from Austin, Texas, and she finished her undergraduate degrees in Anthropology and History at the College of William and Mary. She will be working on her doctorate in anthropological archaeology with a primary focus in the historic period. She is interested in the variability of household economic strategies in peripheral areas of the Americas, and on the way rural communities balance traditional use of natural resources with ties to mercantile and capitalist economies. In addition to archival sources, she wants to pursue oral accounts to look at changing perceptions of the landscape over time. While at UCLA, she hopes to gain more experience in onsite conservation methods, and on ways to increase public interest and access to material history. Her academic advisors are Jeanne Arnold (Professor of Anthropology) and Richard Lesure (Associate Professor of Anthropology). Charles Perreault completed a B.Sc. and just finished a M.Sc. in Anthropology at the Université de Montréal, Canada. His M.Sc. thesis focused on the history of basketry traditions in prehistoric Peru. In addition to basketry and textiles technologies, his research interests include the Eurasian Paleolithic and Pleistocene hominid expansions. He is also very interested in cultural evolution and transmission theory, and he hopes to investigate the Asian Paleolithic record from this perspective. He utilizes computer simulation and cladistics in his research. He will be studying under the direction of Jeanne Arnold (Professor of Anthropology) and Jeff Brantingham (Assistant Professor of Anthropology). p

First conservation class completes summer internships
By Vanessa Muros
This summer, the students from the UCLA/Getty Program in Archaeological and Ethnographic Conservation completed their first internship as part of the course requirements for the master’s degree. The students spent 10 weeks working both on excavations and in museums in several countries. During their internship period, they had the opportunity to gain a wide range of experience in areas such as field conservation, the rehousing of collections, the transport and storage of collections, the technical studies of objects within museum collections, and more. Chris de Brer spent the summer working as a member of the conservation team on the UCLA Tarapacá Valley Archaeological Project in Chile and at the Southwest Museum of the American Indian in Los Angeles. Özge Gençay-Üstün spent her summer in Turkey working as a conservator on two different projects. She first worked at the Gordion Excavation Project where she had the opportunity to work in the conservation labs at both the museum and onsite, working on iron scale armor, ceramics, and bronze objects. She also spent time on-site cleaning the freshly excavated wooden structures and the wooden tomb of King Midas. She then went on to work at the Bodrum Museum of Underwater Archaeology for the remainder of her internship season. There she worked on the documentation and treatment of ceramics and bronzes. Molly Gleeson spent the first half of the summer working as part of the conservation team on the UCLA Tarapacá Valley Archaeological Project. She split her time between working in the lab, examining the mummies that were excavated last year, writing condition reports, taking samples for analysis and rehousing artifacts. In the field, she helped to excavate and lift several mummies from a collapsing vertical cemetery. For the second half of the summer, she worked in the conservation lab at the Southwest Museum of the American Indian under the direction of Angie McGrew. She spent most of her time writing condition reports and cleaning and repairing Northern Californian Pomo baskets from the museum’s collection. Allison Lewis spent the first part of the summer working on the Lofkënd Archaeological Project, where she conserved a range of inorganic and organic objects and worked on-site to lift a fragile object. After returning to the United States, she spent a month working at the Phoebe Hearst Museum of Anthropology at Berkeley where she helped stabilize a large collection of badly salt-damaged Egyptian ceramics prior to a move into better storage, and worked on an intricately constructed and painted wooden “storyteller’s box” from Rajasthan, India. Steven Pickman spent his summer working in the object conservation lab at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art. His main activities focused on the treatment of Islamic/early medieval objects from the Madina collection. In particular, he re-conserved a stemmed glass goblet and compensated for a large loss on a ceramic tazza. For the first part of the summer, Liz Werden worked on lab and field projects at Arizona State University, collaborating with the Tohono O’odham Nation in Tucson. Afterwards, she headed to Connecticut to work with the Mashantucket Pequot Tribal Nation at the Mashantucket Pequot Museum and Research Center. p Vanessa Muros is a Staff Research Associate at the UCLA/Getty Program in Archaeological and Ethnographic Conservation.

Özge Gençay Üstün removing concrete spills from the wooden Tomb of Midas in Gordion,Turkey.

Molly Gleeson repairing a Pomo basket from the collection at the Southwest Museum of the American Indian in Los Angeles, CA.
Backdirt: Annual Review



Professor Colin Renfrew aids in understanding the human past
By Shauna K. Mecartea
Professor Lord Colin Renfrew of Kaimsthorn was selected as the Cotsen Visiting Scholar for Winter 2006, marking the first time a Visiting Scholar led a public lecture series at UCLA. Professor Renfrew, former Disney Professor of Archaeology and Director of the McDonald Institute for Archaeological Research at the University of Cambridge, team–taught “Understanding the Human Past: Archaeology and Beyond” with Richard Lesure, Associate Professor of Anthropology, during his Cotsen Visiting Scholar tenure. While both teaching and giving a public lecture are central to the appointment, 2006 marked the first occasion that a course centered on a series of public lectures given by the Cotsen Visiting Scholar. This idea was originated by Lesure and Charles Stanish, Director of the Cotsen Institute and Professor of Anthropology. “I think the format did work well,” Professor Renfrew said. “Lesure did a lot of work to make it a coherent program.” Apart from the public lectures given by Professor Renfrew, Lesure arranged the class to include a range of guest lecturers, including Ernestine S. Elster (Research Associate), Christopher B. Donnan (Professor of Anthropology) and James Sackett (Professor Emeritus of Anthropology). Professor Renfrew’s eight public lectures, which were held on Fridays and followed by wine and cheese receptions, covered topics from cognitive archaeology and the radiocarbon revolution to contemporary art and prehistoric archaeology and the trafficking of illicit antiquities. Professor Renfrew, who received his B.A., M.A., Ph.D. and Sc.D. from the University of Cambridge, was given the freedom to choose his lecture topics. In his talks, he presented and discussed issues that reflected some of his many books, including Before Civilisation, the Radiocarbon Revolution and Prehistoric Europe (1973), Archaeology and Language: The Puzzle of Indo–European Origins (1987), Loot, Legitimacy and Ownership: The Ethical Crisis in Archaeology (2000), and Figuring It Out: The Parallel Visions of Artists and Archaeologists (2003). The course, which was a survey of archaeology as an approach to understanding the human past, included an upper division undergraduate component as well as seminar–style discussion sections with Professor Renfrew on selected topics from his lectures. Many graduate students participated in the seminar discussions, and Professor Renfrew was pleased with the question and answer sessions in both parts of the course.
Backdirt: Annual Review

“The students took in the information quite energetically,” Professor Renfrew said. “They interacted very positively.” Visiting as an esteemed scholar is not, however, the first interaction that Professor Renfrew has had with the Cotsen Institute. In 1965, he began working with Marija Gimbutas (former Professor of European Archaeology) at a prehistoric site in Greece. In 1967, Gimbutas invited Professor Renfrew to be a visiting professor. “I’ve had a very happy history with UCLA,” said Professor Renfrew, noting that he furthered his relationship with UCLA colleagues by working at Sitagroi with Elster and Gimbutas in the late 1960s and early 1970s. The results of these excavations were later published by the Cotsen Institute’s Publications Unit as Excavations at Sitagroi: A Prehistoric Village in Northeast Greece (1986) and Prehistoric Sitagroi: Excavations in Northeast Greece 1968—1970 (2003). In 1963, Professor Renfrew met Lloyd E. Cotsen, former President/CEO of Neutrogena Corporation and Institute volunteer and donor for over 30 years, while working at a site on the island of Kea in the Aegean Sea. His recent prolonged visit to the Cotsen Institute was made possible by his retirement, which gave him the time needed to accept the Cotsen Visiting Scholar position. As a former McDonald Institute Director, Renfrew was glad to be participating in another Institute environment. “It’s important to have centers where they have a good number of active archaeologists,” Professor Renfrew said. “It gives additional resources for field research, labs, seminars and so on.” While Professor Renfrew has formally retired, his work continues with an unchanged vigor. He plans to direct excavations at a new site on Keros for the next two years while completing three excavation reports. He also intends to publish a volume entitled Prehistory. Professor Renfrew continues to work because of his passion for archaeology and what the future has in store for the discipline. “Archaeology, linking as it does with prehistory, gives us the best insight we can have into the nature of humankind,” Professor Renfrew said. Ultimately, Professor Renfrew thinks archaeology in the future will address the same fundamental question he explored in the public lecture series: What is it to be human? “That’s the question,” he says, “that people are going to go on asking.”

Lord Renfrew with the Cotsen graduate students and Professor Richard Lesure.

Question and Answer with Lord Colin Renfrew
Q:Where was your first excavation and how was your first field season? A: My first excavation was as a schoolboy of about 14, in 1951. I had consulted my Latin master at school as to how to get on an excavation, and he took me to see the Curator of the local museum at Verulamium, the important Roman city near St. Albans (where I went to school). She in turn put me in touch with a former colleague of hers, Sheppard Frere. He was at that time working as a schoolmaster, and during school vacations directing excavations in Canterbury. Canterbury was one of mediaeval Britain’s greatest historic cities, with a wonderful cathedral and important Roman remains. It had been badly damaged by bombing during the War, which ended a few years earlier, and there were building sites waiting to be excavated before rebuilding began. I went on the dig for a week or two at Easter, and enjoyed it very much, and so went back again in the summer of that year. Then I returned to Canterbury each year until starting military service in 1956 before going up to university. Q: What was it about that experience that led you to pursue the profession? A: The wonderful feeling of finding important data — literally digging the data up ­— and discovering objects actually in use 2,000 years ago, was a great incentive. I discovered that the subject really interests me: more so than the physics and biochemistry that I was doing at university. So I switched course half way though, and graduated as an archaeologist. It still seems like a good idea. Q: What are your thoughts on the future of archaeology? A: In general I think archaeology has a great future. It develops a scientific approach to the human past. Yet the subject also ranks as a ‘humanity’, being closely concerned with the emergence of our species, and the subsequent development of human culture in every part of the world. As a subject it is truly international. It should be taught in every school. And the findings of archaeology should become part of everyone’s general knowledge. But it will have much less of a future if the record of the past preserved in archaeological sites is destroyed. Yet that is what is happening today through the looting which goes to provide for the collections of unscrupulous collectors and for museums which lack ethical codes. I am afraid that may ring a bell back in LA! It should be a matter of real public concern. Q: How do you think archaeology plays a role in daily life? A: The high spots of archaeology — the major sites like Stonehenge or Teotihuacán or Cahokia, and the great museums — are for special occasions, not everyday. But archaeology gives you a better understanding of your place in the world — what you are, how we collectively came to be on earth — and of the kind of culture in which we live. That is the sort of knowledge that everyone needs. If people were more aware of their deep roots they would not fall into fanatical factions, based on their perceptions of events which took place relatively recently, over the past two thousand years or so. p
Backdirt: Annual Review


Ceri Ashley: Profiling a visiting Africanist
By Shauna K. Mecartea
Ceri Ashley comes from A beraeron,  a  sma l l seaside town in west Wales. She attended university in London where she spent nine years at the Institute of Archaeology, University College London (UCL) doing her B.A., M.A., and Ph.D. After graduating, she spent a year in eastern Africa working on a range of sites as a graduate attaché of the British Institute in Eastern Africa (BIEA). When she returned to university for her post-graduate studies she decided to concentrate on eastern Africa and opted to write her thesis on communities around the lakeshore of Victoria Nyanza (Lake Victoria) in Kenya and Uganda. Q. How and why did you become interested in archaeology? A. When I was a little girl I lived abroad for a while, including 18 months in Jordan. While I was there we visited a number of impressive sites including Petra, Jerash, Beidha and the crusader castles — I used to love climbing all over the sites and looking for finds. I was fascinated by the fact that potentially no one else had touched or picked up the finds since they were dropped centuries before. Q. What attracted you to the Cotsen Visiting Scholar position? A. I found out about the Cotsen Visiting Scholar program completely by chance and ended up writing my application in an Internet café in western Kenya while the rest of the research team stood outside eating ice cream. What attracted me most was the challenge of working in a completely new research environment, where I could see first hand how archaeology was conducted in a different continent. Also, the rich breadth of the Cotsen Institute’s research profile appealed to me, giving me the chance to look beyond my own regional research specialism. Q. What are some goals you would like to accomplish at the Cotsen Institute? A. While I am at the Cotsen Institute, I will work on a research project that looks at the inter-relationship of archaeology
Backdirt: Annual Review

with sister disciplines such as linguistics and genetics in the context of the so-called Bantu expansion across eastern and southern Africa. UCLA has some amazing opportunities for an Africanist with fantastic library collections as well as the African Studies Center, so I want to really exploit these resources to try and get a holistic picture of the issues and topics involved in this research project. I’m also teaching a class in the Spring term on the archaeology of eastern and southern Africa and giving a Cotsen Institute  public lecture. Through these programs I hope to raise the profile of African archaeology at the Cotsen Institute. What I am hoping to show is that not only is African archaeology intrinsically interesting and appealing, it also has wider resonance with global discourses. Q. How do you think your dissertation research will influence your future research? A. I really enjoyed working on my dissertation topic — the theme of lakes and lacustrine archaeology is one that has been somewhat ignored by archaeologists in the region and I would love to develop it more in the future. I think there is a lot of room for research on the islands of the Lakes, comparing the varying cycles of settlement and the inter-relationships between the islands and the mainland coast. For the immediate future of the next year at the Cotsen Institute, the background of my Ph.D. research will be invaluable. The Great Lakes region of eastern Africa is a critical area in the Bantu migration debate, and is often cited as a major re-distribution point for subsequent expansions. I’ll therefore be able to compare my experiences in the Great Lakes with other focal points across the rest of eastern and southern Africa. Q. How do you think language and culture correspond? A. Obviously language and communication are essential in constructing and maintaining group identities and cultures, but the precise nature of this influence probably fluctuates according to circumstance. Within the context of the Bantu language spread, I think archaeology has suffered from the legacy of 1960s linguistic meta-narratives of absolute population and language change. There are all sorts of complex issues involved in the way archaeology has applied and interpreted these models, from prevailing archaeological theory to the contested politics of the past, for example, in apartheid and post-apartheid South Africa. My aim this year is to try and untangle some of these diverse and varied influences, and look at how and why our understanding of culture and language has been defined within “Bantu” Africa. p


Charting chiefly power in Iceland
By Shauna K. Mecartea
His love of history and anthropology as an undergraduate at University of Florida has led Davide Zori to study the Icelandic Sagas and archaeological record in tandem as a graduate student at the Cotsen Institute of Archaeology. As  an  undergraduate, Davide majored in Anthropology and History and minored in Italian and Medieval and Early Modern Studies. Before graduating in 2002, Davide gained an interest in archaeology and participated in his first dig by volunteering at an African American/Seminole site in Florida. “I was into medieval history and I liked the aspect of archaeology,” said Davide, explaining how he began to meld his two passions. “I didn’t like just reading books. I wanted to get my hands dirty.” In May and June of 2002, Davide excavated a medieval village site in Ireland with a University of Florida history professor. From this experience, Davide discovered he wanted to focus on Scandinavian archaeology. When looking for a graduate program, Davide investigated his options at UCLA and found the Archaeology Program to be a perfect fit to fulfill his desire to study Viking Age archaeology. “UCLA is unique in that it has an interdisciplinary program that allows me to study various disciplines,” said Davide, noting that he was impressed by the opportunity to work so closely with other departments such as Germanic Languages. Upon meeting with Jesse Byock, Professor of Germanic Languages, Davide realized that he had a great opportunity to work with a dynamic advisor and be a part of a program that would allow him to study both archaeology and historical texts. Now working on his dissertation, with the assistance of a National Science Foundation Graduate Fellowship, Davide is interested in charting chiefly power in Iceland by using Icelandic Sagas and the archaeological record. For the last five years, Byock and his colleagues have been excavating Hrísbrú, a church in the Mosfell Valley of southwestern Iceland, which is mentioned in Egil’s Saga. This Saga discusses the placement of the famed Egil’s bones in the Mosfell Valley. In chapter 86, the author writes: “When Christianity was adopted by law in Iceland (ca. 1000 AD), Grím of Mosfell was baptized and built a church there. People say that Thordis had Egil’s bones moved to the church, and this is the evidence. When a church was built at Mosfell, the one that Grím had built at Hrísbrú was demolished and a new graveyard was laid out. Under the altar some human bones were found, much bigger than ordinary human bones, and people are confident that these were Egil’s because of stories told by old men.” For Davide and his colleagues, the Sagas are just one source of historical and social information, albeit a particularly rich source, since Icelanders wove a rich oral tradition into accounts that were meant to be historically plausible for the medieval Icelandic audience. From the emphasis on the common themes of legal issues, feuds and farming in the texts, “you can understand what was important to the Icelanders,” argues Davide. Currently, Davide is on a 14-month leave to finish his doctoral fieldwork. He has joined the Hólar Archaeological Research Project (HARP) to investigate the Hjalta Valley in order to do a comparison of chiefly power between it and the Mosfell Valley by utilizing written, archaeological and other scientific information. According to Davide, the chiefdom that evolved in the Hjalta Valley started weak and then grew in power while Mosfell started strong and then slowly deteriorated. Davide believes that these inverse power trajectories are reflected in the written record — as the Mosfell chieftains weakened they disappeared from the written record, whereas the texts concerning the chieftains in the Hjalta Valley increase as they rise in prominence. During his 14-month-leave, Davide will also act as Field Director for the Mosfell Archaeological Project (MAP), which is directed by Byock. Davide will take part in both HARP and MAP to compile his research and write his dissertation. Upon returning to Los Angeles this fall, Davide plans to finish his dissertation and apply for faculty positions at various universities. He aims to take American students to Iceland to continue archaeological research and to inspire others to investigate the Viking past. p

Davide Zori, left, doing field work in Iceland.
Backdirt: Annual Review



Focusing on Historical Africa
By Shauna K. Mecartea
Since the fourth grade, he wanted to be an archaeologist. It only took him two more years to decide that he wanted to specialize in African archaeology. After completing his underg raduate  st udies at the University of New Hampshire, he pursued his long-held passion and joined the Peace Corps to work in Sierra Leone for two years. Christopher DeCorse, now Professor and Chair of Anthropology at the Maxwell School of Syracuse University, started at UCLA in 1981 to study African historical archaeology. He received his M.A. in 1983 and Ph.D. in 1989 from the Archaeology Program. “It was an exciting and intellectually stimulating place to be,” Chris said about the Archaeology Program, emphasizing the quality of the faculty he studied with at the time such as Merrick Posnansky (of History and Anthropology), James Sackett, Tim Earle, and James Hill (of Anthropology), and Elizabeth Carter (Professor of Near Eastern Languages & Cultures), among others. Chris applied to the program because he thought he would find a wonderful advisor who would guide his interest in historical archaeology and Africa: Posnansky. “Merrick was a fantastic mentor. I can’t imagine having gone to another program,” Chris said. For his Master’s thesis, Chris used information he gathered while working in the Peace Corp in Sierra Leone. As a Peace Corp member, he was taught about the inland valley environment, rice swamp cultivation and the Kuranko language. And while he was there, he supervised the construction of livestock clinics. The Master’s thesis that he completed at UCLA included Late Stone Age sites and fortified towns connected to slave trading. Funded by the Friends of Archaeology (FoA), the Cotsen Institute support group, Chris was able to perform analysis and carbon dating of the sites and looked at the distribution of features in towns associated with slave raiding in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. His work for his Ph.D. focused on a different area of Africa: coastal Ghana. At the suggestion of Posnansky, Chris worked
Backdirt: Annual Review

at Elmina, the site of the first and largest European trade post established in sub-Saharan Africa, where he continues to work today. In the 1980s, Chris arrived in Ghana funded by the Fulbright Association and FoA to work on his dissertation while holding a lecturer position at the University of Ghana amidst a collapsed infrastructure due to a coup in the 1970s. During his two-and-a-half-year stay in Ghana, Chris gained valuable teaching and networking experience. He also acted as the excavation director at Elmina. By 1987, Chris returned to the United States to finish writing his dissertation. In 1989, he went to Indiana University of Pennsylvania as an Adjunct Assistant Professor and in 1992 he left to become Assistant Professor of Anthropology at Syracuse University, where he remains today. Chris has co-written two of the best Anthropology texts for Prentice Hall, has edited books on historical archaeology, has written more than 40 papers and is on the Editorial Board of two international journals of archaeology. He has also been highly influential in the development of diasporan archaeology. As his former advisor, Merrick is only proud. “Chris was my most talented and energetic student, even now he works harder than anyone I know researching in West Africa (Ghana and Sierra Leone), the Caribbean as well as in the US.” “I have a very high regard for Chris as both an archaeologist and as a human being,” continued Merrick. Chris believes that his graduate experience at UCLA was beneficial to his career path in many ways. During his formative years, Chris found the faculty to be nurturing, engaging and intellectually stimulating. “They were accessible and gave good advice even though they were prominent in the field,” Chris said. “Merrick was always fantastic at pointing you in various directions.” His experience with inspiring faculty members has influenced his teaching and mentoring of his own graduate students at Syracuse as evidenced by his recent award of the William Wasserstrom Prize, which recognizes outstanding graduate teaching. Chris is proud of his successful graduate students who have received about $500,000 in grants, ranging from Fulbright to NSF awards. In the future, Chris plans on continuing to work in coastal Ghana with a recent NSF grant. An additional grant will support underwater research. While he will continue to work at Elmina, he plans to focus on other areas along Ghana’s coast to look at regional settlement patterning and subsistence over the past two millennia as well as political economy in the hinterland. p


A passion for archaeology
By Eric Gardner and Shauna K. Mecartea
Recently, UCLA was honored with the endowment of a new chair in Archaeology — the Kershaw Chair of Ancient Eastern Mediterranean Studies (currently held by William M. Schniedewind) — thanks to a generous gift by the Kershaw Family Trust. Norma Kershaw, a long-time supporter of the Cotsen Institute, is the person who made this possible. In addition to being heavily involved in sustaining archaeological programs in the area, Kershaw is also a scholar of Art History. She received her M.A. in Art History and Archaeology from Columbia University and for years has been a sought-after speaker around the country. Kershaw also held a professorship at Hofstra University, where she specialized in art history of the ancient Near East, and participated in field excavations across the eastern Mediterranean. She is an Honorary Trustee of the Archaeological Institute of America, the American Schools of Oriental Research, and the W.F. Albright Institute of Archaeological Research. Kershaw’s lifetime passion for archaeology is also expressed by her constant volunteer activities at institutions across Southern California. All of us at the Cotsen Institute are grateful for her enduring contributions. Q: How did you first become interested in archaeology, particularly the archaeology of the Near East? A: I am primarily an historian of ancient art, with a special interest in how each successive culture was influenced by those that had gone before. Archaeology uncovers the artifact studied by the art historian. The Near East is the cradle of our Judeo-ChristianMuslim culture. Understanding what happened there over the millennia leads to better knowledge of our own backgrounds — and sometimes can even predict the future. Q: What inspired you to kindly endow a chair at UCLA? A: UCLA is one of the world leaders in Biblical studies and northwest Semitic languages. Other ancient cultures also are studied, each in its own distinguishable department. The Cotsen Institute enables scholars to cross disciplinary lines and to recognize universal patterns to enrich understanding. I have the pleasure of longtime friendship with Lloyd Cotsen and Giorgio Buccellati, founder of the Cotsen Institute. Q: Given your prior history of endowing chairs in archaeology, such as the one at University of California, San Diego, what is the impetus for your philanthropy? Why do you think it is important to fund archaeological research? A: We have long admired the work of Giorgio Buccelllati in Syria, Elizabeth Carter in Turkey, Willeke Wendrich in Egypt, Chris Donnan in Peru, and William Schniedewind in textual studies, among others. We are fortunate that we are now financially able to help support their work. Q: What do you hope will come out of this endowed chair? What type of results would be gratifying to see? A: A continuation and a deepening of understanding of archaeology, plus more education of the general public. Q: Where do you think archaeology is heading? And how do you think UCLA will lead the way? A: Technology is taking over from moving dirt and raw speculation. We can be on firmer ground about the past with these new technologies, but more training and equipment are constantly needed to use them to the best advantage. It is costly, but UCLA has the promise. p
Backdirt: Annual Review



Isla del Sol: The Birthplace of the Ancient Inca
Lake Titicaca, Bolivia — A Diary of a Director’s Council Member By Patty Civalleri Director’s Council, Cotsen Institute of Archaeology at UCLA

I didn’t know there was any place left on Earth that would take five days to reach.
Portal to adventure
As a lifelong armchair archaeologist, I have traveled the world using my one- and two-week vacations from the hightech industry as the portals through which I would venture into the past. Over the years, I would sit in my office and as I raced to meet some arbitrary deadline, I would steal a few minutes to research my next trip through that portal. The inspiration would come from many sources, including exotic movies, National Geographic magazines and discussions with other adventurers. The destinations and eras were always decided many months in advance. Once decided, the next task was my lame attempt to learn the language: a daunting challenge in every case. I would learn just enough to handle most emergencies, all the while perusing maps, roads, trails and goat paths via the Internet. Once familiar with the topography, the cultural history was then uncovered. Family time at the breakfast and dinner table at my house were spent shuffling through books and maps while my family and I attempted to cram a lifetime’s education into a few stolen moments as we prepared for our next foray into past cultures. In this case, we were inspired by our friend and neighbor Charlie Steinmetz, Cotsen Institute of Archaeology volunteer and donor. At neighborhood social functions, Charlie was the guy that always had really cool tales of traveling to far off lands with a group of archaeologists from the Cotsen Institute. “Hey Patty, you’ll never guess where we’re going next?” Charlie asked. His tales were a formalized version of what my family had been
Backdirt: Annual Review

doing casually for many years! And the people he traveled with — they were the real thing! Archaeologists that really knew the stuff that we wanted to know more about! One day, I asked Charlie if it was possible for us to get involved with this fascinating group and their amazing adventures. “Sure,” he replied. “All you have to do is join the Director’s Council (a support group of the Cotsen Institute). We’re planning a trip to the Andes led by the Director of the Cotsen Institute, Professor Charles (Chip) Stanish. Why don’t you join us?”

But I’m not an archaeologist
Wow! The Andes! The Inca! Peru and Bolivia! Llamas! All led by the well-published professor of South American cultural history who actually specializes in the ancient Inca! Wow! “But Charlie, wouldn’t we be in the way of all of the professionals on this trip?” I asked. “No way,” he smiled. “These guys love sharing their knowledge and experience with us “regular people.” They really love what they do, and they are great conversationalists. Oh, and they really appreciate a glass of good wine at the end of the day. So are you interested in joining us?” “Ok,” I replied enthusiastically, “but you had me back at ‘Hey Patty’!”

The Team
A small band of seven enthusiastic travelers was assembled, which included Chip as our leader who provided us with answers to every conceivable question, lectures and lessons about the topography of the land, the history of the various cultures who inhabited these areas over the eons, and specifically about the

rituals of the ancient Inca. Lisa disaster. “Why are there no life Cipolla, just shy of attaining her jackets?” I asked. “Because,” Ph.D. in Anthropology, joined said Chip with a grin, “if you us as both an historical advisor fall overboard, you’ll freeze to as well as our travel liaison. death before we could rescue Charlie, former president of you. So what’s the point?” Tierney Metals in Southern We climbed aboard this tiny California, has had a lifelong vessel and headed out into the passion for learning global lake with our skipper (a noncultural history and was part English-speaking teenager who of the group. Dean Abernathy, drove the boat with his feet!) again just shy of completing all the while singing the theme his doctorate in Architecture, song to Gilligan’s Island: “… a joined our team to document 3-hour tour…” GPS coordinates, and to study We were well into the day the construction and assembly when we first placed our feet of the stone blocks used by on the legendary birthplace of the ancients to build their the ancient Inca: Isla del Sol. structures. Harris Bass, Esq., From our little trout boat, we who practices business law for climbed straight up the side of a a Los Angeles law firm, joined cliff to the ancient lookout site our party as did my husband of Pilco Kaima. In remarkably Roger Civalleri, a practicing good condition even today, business broker in Southern this sturdy facility served as a California. Lastly was myself: as From left: Dean Abernathy, Roger Civalleri, Charles Steinmetz, Patty Civalleri, cliff-top lookout that aided in a professional photographer and Lisa Cipolla, Professor Charles (Chip) Stanish and Harris Bass. the defensive safety of these digital multimedia specialist, this exotic trip sounded too good wonderful New World people. As I sat inside this weatherto pass up. So, off we went. beaten structure and peered through the trapezoidal doorway (an unmistakable architectural signature point for the Inca), This situation was rife with potential disaster it is not difficult to see what they saw those many centuries ago. Looking around the room, I can see that geologically The first five days of this amazing adventure were spent speaking, these people were in possession of great wealth: the visiting airports and hotels in three countries: stonework was incredible. This island provided them with an From Los Angeles, CA, to Lima, the historic and colorful abundant supply of stone from all three major rock groups: capital of Peru; igneous, metamorphic and sedimentary. With this, they had To Cuzco, the umbilicus of the Inca Empire, and the access to the basic materials needed to build sturdy facilities, launching point to the famous Machu Picchu; useful tools and weapons, and to create all of the necessary To the quaint, but bustling, university town of Puno high items needed for everyday survival. All this and an awesome up in the Andean altiplano; view to boot! Into Bolivia for an overnight Back in our little trout boat, stay in the picturesque waterfront we circumnavigated the island get-away of Copacabana. until finally we alit on a small Our final destination of Isla dock where we would begin del Sol (Island of the Sun) lay in the our hike up the Inca trail. We middle of the frigid Lake Titicaca, were greeted warmly by a small the highest navigable lake in the handful of local islanders who world. Our adventurous band of ushered us ashore to show us their eight warriors (a professor from hospitality as well as their native the University of Puno joined us handicrafts. To ease the burden later) was led aboard a little 13-foot on this trek, I hired a young man trout boat with double outboard to help carry my equipment. engines and no life jackets. [Are After posing for pictures with you serious?] A lifetime of sailing the always-photogenic llamas, we experience told me that this The ruins of Pilco Kaima on the southern side of the Island of the Sun. proceeded up the path behind The Island of the Moon can bee seen in the background. situation was rife with potential the waterfall to the top of the
Backdirt: Annual Review


Patty poses with a local island resident and her two pet llamas.

mountain where I was told our lunch was waiting. “The islanders are very proud of the trucha (trout) that is caught fresh daily in the lake,” Chip said. And after that mile-high hike up the side of a mountain, trucha sounded great, and so did a little nap in my hotel room. “Chip, I don’t see any hotels here. Where will we stay tonight?” I asked. Pointing down the other side of the mountain, he said, “See that village down there? We will hike over the mountain behind that village, and we’ll find another village on the other side. We’ll hike through that village and over the next mountain. At that point, we’ll see an isthmus in the distance, and our place is just beyond that. Ready?” [Aggghhhhhh!!! Are you serious? I thought we were done for the day!] “Sure, no problem,” I replied. We trundled along, over the hills and through the villages, schlepping gear all the way. This is no easy task at any elevation, and certainly not at an elevation of over 12,000 feet! However, the scenery was such that I had never seen before. I couldn’t resist stopping every ten steps or so to take another photograph. A visual feast was laid at my feet as I looked over the well-terraced landscape to the beautiful sparkling blue lake beyond. Terracing is a common practice worldwide among hilldwelling cultures for several reasons, not the least of which is that when you cut a slope into terraced levels, water is absorbed into the ground rather than rolling down a hill. This was a boon to farming that was recognized and practiced among cultures throughout history all over the globe. We passed through a village where Chip stopped to show some of the locals what they look like in his recently published book, Archaeological Research on the Islands of the Sun and Moon, Lake Titicaca, Bolivia: Final Results from the Proyecto Tiksi Kjarka, which was co-edited by Brian S. Bauer. The people were delighted to see their own images in a book. Runners went ahead of us so that by the time we arrived in the next village, they were already expecting us, and they too wanted to see their pictures in this now-famous book.
Backdirt: Annual Review

In one of the villages was a one-room museum that housed many of the ancient artifacts that Chip and his teams had uncovered over the years of excavation. Chip’s team originally collaborated with the community to build this facility to promote archaeology on the island, and to help form a bond between these people and their past. Through the efforts of the islanders, a beautiful if humble facility was created to promote their cultural heritage to outsiders, like us. Chip had formed a relationship with a local resident who proudly acts as the caretaker of the museum, and is happy to impart his knowledge to anyone who takes the time to ask. We walked through the next village in single-file along a tiny dirt road that led us between the houses. Suddenly I heard shouting from the line in front of me: “Get into a doorway! Now!” Just as I ducked into a convenient recessed doorway, a small herd of longhorn steers came barreling through the village, ready to impale anyone who stood in their way. Peering up the tiny road, I could see that the coast was clear and that my fellow travelers were alive and not impaled. Over the next ridge, my cameras clicked and rolled as each scene unfolded before me. Llamas grazed lazily in the warm Andean sun, while pouf-skirted women in black hats worked speedily in the potato fields, their babies napping comfortably on their backs. The year before, the locals installed electricity for the first time. It made a lasting impression to see the newly strung wires hanging over this otherwise primitive-looking scene. The busy but friendly women of this island were dressed as though they were always headed for a party. With layered petticoats beneath their colorful hand-stitched skirts, little black felt hats sat upon their heads and their white blouses boasted complementary ruffles. The new mothers toss a sling over one shoulder, which is designed to comfortably nestle an infant. This type of clothing is the standard dress for women — no matter the task at hand. Whether farming potatoes or herding llamas, their colorful outfits can be seen from the villages at the bottom of the hills.

A variety of livestock graze lazily on the neatly terraced hillside.

At last we reached the isthmus, our home for the next and photographed the angles and sizes of the structures that we several days. [Ahh, a bed!] Time for a little “R & R.” Someone passed along the way. And me? I simply snapped away. I filmed; brought a bottle of wine, someone brought a few beers, and I shot; I absorbed. This was clearly one of the most interesting someone brought cheese and crackers. We lazed away the and exciting trips I had ever taken in my life. To be able to take remainder of the day in the garden talking and rehashing the part in this adventure was a miracle and I will spend the rest earlier adventures. That evening, we walked to the single local of my life thanking Chip and the Cotsen Institute for allowing village restaurant and enjoyed the home-cooked trucha. After me — a non-academic layperson — to participate in this amazing dinner, we walked through the village on the dirt roads in the adventure reserved in the past to a small group of scholars and pitch-black night and noticed how differently the stars looked a smattering of cognoscente. But I digress … from our new south-of-the-equator vantage point. The pilgrimage trail meandered down the hillside and The next several days were spent continuing on the trail gracefully concluded at the Sacred Rock, the exact point that the Inca took on their annual pilgrimage to the legendary where the first Inca was said to have been born. From my birthplace of their people: the Sacred Rock. The well-worn path hilltop vantage-point, it was easy to imagine a huge procession is several miles long and easy to follow. Along the way Harris, emerging over the hill being led by lavishly attired priests Charlie and Roger took GPS readings and documented the wearing tall multicolored headdresses; slaves carrying royalty entire pilgrimage trail for the first time. We took thousands of on portable divans; cheering throngs of faithful followers photographs that would later be studied who left the fields each spring just to in various labs and universities around worship at this shrine and to witness the world. the magnificent rituals held in behalf Using the bright orange transit that of their gods. All the while knowing they had been hauling on their backs, that participation in these events would Chip and Lisa recorded distances and guarantee a bountiful harvest and good measured various locations all around health. the Sacred Rock. Many questions needed I sat perched on a rock with my back to be answered such as what was the to the lake and faced the Sacred Rock. meaning behind the location of several In front of the Rock, sat a square stone monuments as they relate to the main altar slab (a table, if you will) surrounded by and to the position of the sun in various eight rocks (chairs?). A small group of seasons? What role did the solstices play hikers from Europe walked the trail in the rituals? that led them to the altar in front me, From left: Harris Bass, Charles Steinmetz and Roger Roger and Harris hiked the hills, Civalleri take GPS readings. and seated themselves on the stone seats counted and recorded the steps to the altar around the table. They marveled at this and scoured the grounds in search of artifacts that would help stone altar, and they spoke excitedly about the ancients who to augment the collection in the local museum. Dean measured must have schlepped these stones here to create this wonderful altar. Little did they know that these “table and chairs” were not ancient at all, but judging by some old photographs, they were brought here in the early part of the twentieth century by some locals or tourists. The real altar, the Sacred Rock, was the huge boulder that sat quietly behind them, the one that they never noticed. That moment solidified to us the importance of having knowledgeable professionals with us. It was both an honor and a privilege. If we were here on our own, how would we have guessed that this official-looking stone slab wasn’t the ancient altar that we were seeking? Tales have been passed down through many generations that spoke of a large gleam of golden light coming from the Island of the Sun blazed across the lake in broad daylight. It seems that during important rituals, the Inca would cover the Sacred Rock (of the Rock of the Puma) with hammered gold (early foil?) that was bright enough to be seen from the Bolivian and Peruvian mainland many miles away across the lake. What According to legend, the first Inca emperor -- Manco Capac -- and his wife a magical and mysterious site that must have been! -- Mama Ojlia -- emerged from the Sacred Rock. As a result, the Sacred Rock Just beyond this ceremonial centerpiece were some very has been revered for centuries Inset: the stone table and seats serve as a false altar. interesting looking ruins. Wandering toward them, I saw that they  spilled  gently  over a slope that went to the water’s edge.
Backdirt: Annual Review


The Labyrinth housed the priests and royals during the long ceremonies at the Sacred Rock.

On Isla de la Luna (the Island of the Moon), some of the ruins have been restored for their conservation and to promote tourism. 14

Backdirt: Annual Review

An original Inca road.

The stonework was magnificent, the number of connecting rooms seemed endless and once again, the views were spectacular. This “labyrinth” must have been used to house the priests and religious royals that supported the many rituals that were held at the Sacred Rock. I crawled with my cameras from room-to-room trying to gain an understanding of the purpose of each room. The thin atmosphere at this altitude shown a sky that was bluer than any I had ever seen, and this clarity of the air is reflected in many of my photographs. So as I sat in this roofless labyrinth, the sun and the sky turned the waters of Lake Titicaca into a magical color that transcended into the air that surrounded this entire mystical place. It was easy to understand the powers that mesmerized and transformed those hard-working ancients into a crowd of hopefuls. The journey back to civilization was quick. Halfway across the lake we stopped at Isla de la Luna (Island of the Moon). It was interesting to see how the ruins have been enhanced by the archaeological authorities in Bolivia. The Bolivian government, in their efforts to restore the ruins, have consolidated and protected the structures. We crossed the lake back to Bolivia, passed through Copacabana, across the border into Peru, and headed straight for our luxury accommodations in Puno. Ah … a hot bath with bubbles and jets! The next day was to end in Cuzco where we would begin the next leg of our journey, one that would be filled with the sights and sounds of a famous Inca pinnacle settlement called Machu Picchu. But first we had to get there. Once again, we

benefited from having our own scholars to show us the sites. As we crossed over the Andean pinnacles, some taking us to heights over 14,000 feet in our little motor coach, Chip had our driver veer off the main highway to small, sometimes dirt roads that disappeared into the hillsides. We would stop at what we learned were one-room “museums” that stored ancient artifacts. The artwork left behind by the various tribes and cultures that have inhabited the Andes for thousands of years lay quietly hidden in these little rooms scattered throughout the region. We were careful not to damage them, and to make sure that we left these places as we had found them. Large stone statues of warriors with a dagger-like knife in one hand and a human head in the other hand spoke volumes about warfare tactics and ancient rituals. The pottery, baskets, vessels and toys were protected from the world in these secret rooms, never to be seen by the world, but preserved for the eyes of future generations. What a privilege. As we neared Cuzco, we had to pass through the ancient gates that sifted the traffic that passed to and from this ancient city. The gatekeepers may have collected a fee to pass through, or they may have been the guardians of the city, or the partitioners of water, or maybe all of the above. In any case, the power of the gatekeepers never went unnoticed, nor does it today. We ended this leg of our journey at a magnificent hotel, whose base architecture was clearly left over from the Inca. Built to serve as a religious center, it was soon semi-demolished by Pizarro, the Spanish conqueror that led the small army that extinguished the Inca empire. After overtaking the Inca, the Spaniards built on this native structure and added to it to create Pizarro’s Palace. Now a five-star hotel, the furnishings today boast of a very lavish Spanish style. As I walked the halls, I noticed that some of the walls and many of the floors were left over from the hefty stonework of the Inca, and sitting quietly with closed eyes, I could almost hear the music and the vocal chanting of these exotic and proud peoples of our South American past. As illustrated in this journal, the members of the Director’s Council of the Cotsen Institute are from all walks of life. What they share is a common interest in various aspects of human cultural history. The Director’s Council offers its members many academic benefits, which include private lectures given by distinguished scholars from universities around the world, catered gourmet dinners at the Cotsen Institute, invitations to join various archaeologists on the type of excursion mentioned in this article, private gourmet dinner parties at various homes, and many other functions that accommodate both an academic interest in history as well as a social immersion with others that share your interests in cultural history and travel. For more information about joining the Director’s Council, please call (310) 206-8934 or e-mail p
To see a complete online photo gallery of Patty Civalleri’s Inca trip, please visit: 15

Backdirt: Annual Review

Compiled by Shauna K. Mecartea
In June and July of 2006, I went back to Turk ey, work ing at my disse rtati on site of Gordion, the capit al of the Phrygian king dom of the first mille nnium BC. Gordion was occup ied for over 2,000 years with no significan t aban donment, so it prov ides an excel lent case stud y for huma n adap tatio n to the natu ral environme nt of Cent ral Anat olia. I spen t the summer surveying the natu ral vege tatio n of the area and building a reference colle ction of mode rn seeds and wood . I bega n a proje ct with Dr. Naom i Mille r from the Universit y of Penn sylva nia to create a phot ogra phic data base of native stepp e plant s (such as the gras s pictu red here ) and put it on the Web. —M ac Marston, Arch aeolo gy graduate stude nt

on Survey ed in the Siky at ip ic rt pa I ersity of This summer os of the Univ ol L is n an Y of the Sikyon Project, led by tensive survey in an as w is h T reece, which Thessaly. t of Corinth, G es w st ju d polis te Plateau, loca c and Classical ai h rc A or aj m a and was home to ng the Roman ri du on ti la pu nt po alysis of the and a significa ped with the an el h I s. od ri pe agnostic Byzantine d classifying di an g in rt so y, mmer Roman potter However, the su e. ap sh d an d ic licitously locate sherds by fabr fe as w te si e h k. T h, where was not all wor a fantastic beac om fr s er et m lo ly did I just a few ki rnoons. Not on te af g in x la re mic y we spent man chaeology, cera ar ey rv su t ou al ab any amazing learn a great de ery, but I met m tt po an om R d analysis, an e. a fantastic tim people and had ent y graduate stud og ol ae h rc A y, —Maddy Bra


Backdirt: Annual Review

The Pampa Grande Archaeological Project continued with its third season this year and began excavations in a new sector of the site. The Late Moche Period (AD 600 – 800) urban center is located on the north coast of Peru and was one of the first true cities in South America. Excavations revealed 18 rooms within a large domestic compound believed to have been occupied by several families or a large extended family. Investigations centered around two open patios with terraces and their associated rooms and storage areas. Evidence of craft production was found in several rooms including mold fragments for making ceramics and figurines, storage vessels with traces of clay inside, and several artifacts associated with grinding and polishing. Utilitarian artifacts found include spindle whorls for making thread, storage vessels, plates, needles, awls, and spatulas. Fineware items include stirrup spout vessel fragments, beads, pendants, and two beautiful copper knives. The enthusiastic and hardworking crew consisted of two recent graduates from UCLA, a paleoethnobotany student from CSU Fullerton, and Peruvian students from universities in Lima and Trujillo. — Ilana Johnson, Anthropology graduate student

The year of 2006 was our third se ason at the tum students includ ulus in Lofkënd, ed Seth Pevnick, Joanna Potenza Albania. This ye Muros of the UCL an ar our UCLA d myself. In additi A/Getty conser on, we were join vation program Almost all of ou ed an by Vanessa r Albanian colle d Allison Lewis , a student from agues returned Excavation of th , as well as our lo the program. e tumulus came cal Lofkënd wor interesting finds close to complet km en . , including bron io n this year, and ze diadems and we excavated gr pottery. By the ot he r jewelry, bone pi aves with end of the summ er, we had reache ns and some real uncovered more ly wonderful d sterile soil in graves to be exca much of the tum vated next seas As always we to ulus, but we had on. ok se ve ra l weekend trips, site of Gurzezë, this year we visi which overlook ted the nearby s the Neolithic si live, Gurzezë w fortified Iron Age te of Cakran. Like as inhabited ov the site of Apollo er a long period of ti architectural re nia, where we me and we saw mains, in fact, on Greek, Roman e of our guides is dervish. and Christian the current inha bitant of the site One of this year’s , he is the local highlights was ou Sarah Morris an r en d of season party. Ou d Lorenc Bejko r co-directors Jo arranged to have we were treated hn Papadopoulos our workmen co to live Albanian , me to Apollonia. music played by Adriatik on clar During dinner two of the workm inet (see photo en: Ndriçim on at left). Great m made for a grea keyboards and usic, two roast t end to the seas sh ee on p, and a warm su . — Lyssa Stapleto mmer night n, Archaeology graduate studen t

Backdirt: Annual Review


Compiled by Shauna K. Mecartea
To maintain connection with Cotsen Institute students, alumni, research associates, faculty, and other affiliates, please mail in your updates to the address on the back cover or email them to We look forward to hearing about the latest achievements from our archaeological community. Alumni are recognized by acknowledging the year of their graduation after their name.

Research Associate Patty Anawalt, Director of the Center for the Study of Regional Dress, located in the Fowler Museum of Cultural History, has now submitted the completed text to Thames & Hudson for The Worldwide History of Dress: The Origins of Fashion from the Paleolithic to the Present, and the editing process has begun. This Big Book, which covers 32 of the globe’s non-Western, traditional cultures, will be a 600-page volume that will include over 1,000 images of clothing, many from the Fowler Museum’s own textile collection. The present schedule is for the book to appear in Fall 2007. Jeanne E. Arnold, Professor of Anthropology, has published several articles during the last year, including in Current Anthropology, World Archaeology, and an edited volume entitled Household Archaeology on the Northwest Coast. She also conducted excavations at Ts’qó:ls, a Coast Salish historic village site in southwestern British Columbia. Ran Boytner has been named the new Director for International Programs at the Cotsen Institute. Ran received his Ph.D. from UCLA and is a specialist in Andean archaeology. Liz Baker Brite, Anthropology  graduate student, completed her M.A. The thesis, “Social Processes in the Production of Wall Paintings at Kazakhl’i-yatkan, Uzbekistan,” looks at the processes used to make murals she excavated at the site in 2005 (such as the kinds of materials they used and how the paintings were put together), and explores some the potential social and economic implications of her findings. She will return to Uzbekistan in August and September with the help of a grant from the Friends of Archaeology to continue working on excavations at the site. She also worked with Monica Smith, Associate Professor of Anthropology, in January at her site, Sisulpalgarh, in Orissa, India. P. Jeffrey Brantingham, Assistant Professor of Anthropology, received an award from the National Science Foundation Human Social Dynamics program to conduct research on the computational and mathematical model of crime in Los Angeles. The University of California Mathematical and Simulation Modeling of Crime project (UCMaSC) is a collaboration with faculty in the UCLA
Backdirt: Annual Review

Mathematics Department, UC Irvine Criminology, Law and Society Department and the Los Angeles and Long Beach Police Departments. The goals of the project are to try to understand the dynamics underlying the formation, persistence and dissipation of so-called crime hotspots and to develop ideas that might be used by law enforcement agencies to reduce crime. This work draws on Brantingham’s interest in computer simulation and the organization of human spatial behavior. It is also founded on the idea that contemporary criminals behave very much like traditional human foragers, like the Paleolithic hunter-gathers he studies from the Tibetan Plateau. For more information see http:// Research Associate and Palomar College Professor of Anthropology Philip de Barros ’85 presented a well-received paper at the SAA meeting in Puerto Rico for a symposium on African societies entitled “The Origin of the Bassar Chiefdom: Ironing Out a Solution without Being a Slave to Traditional Models.” It is to be part of a book publication edited by Cameron Monroe and Akin Ogundiran with a new title for his chapter: “The Bassar Chiefdom in the Context of Theories of Political Economy.” He also presented a paper at the Society for Africanist Archaeologists (SAfA) in Calgary entitled “Dekpassanware: A Surprising Early Iron Age Site from Bassar, Togo.” The PowerPoint presentation and accompanying text will be published on the Web as part of the Proceedings of the 2006 SAfA Conference. His Palomar College Archaeology Web pages that are associated with his personal Web page recently won an Award of Excellence from the Study Sphere — a Learning Resource Evaluator that looks at Web pages nationwide. Visit the Web site at John Dietler, Anthropology graduate student, along with Jeanne Arnold (Professor of Anthropology), was awarded a National Science Foundation Dissertation Improvement Grant in March 2006. Their project investigates the relationship between the organization of craft production and the emergence of chiefly societies in southwest Florida. The material culture of the powerful complex hunter-gatherer societies that historically dominated the region consisted largely of wooden items made with unique marine shell tools.

Research Associate Judith Rasson, Assistant Professor at Central European University, Budapest, received a grant from CEU for research in Macedonia to study pastoral transhumance in the Lake Prespa region. Three avenues will be explored: site survey and mapping of mountain pastoral sites in Prespa National Park, ethnoarchaeological discussions with herders from the area, and archival research into historic documents, especially from fifteenth- and sixteenth-century Ottoman records. Dwight Read, Professor of Anthropology, recently finished the draft of his book, Archaeological Classification: A Conceptual and Methodological Approach, which will be published by Leftcoast Press. The book is based on the work he has published on methods for identifying types and forming typologies. James Sackett, Professor Emeritus of Anthropology, was named to the Comité d’Honneur of the Union Internationale des Sciences Préhistoriques et Protohistorique (USIPP). He was both the American representative and an international member of the UISPP central committee for several years. Research Associate Julia L. J. Sanchez ’97 has decided to become a full-time bureaucrat as Chief Administrative Officer at the Department of Earth & Space Sciences at UCLA. She continues to publish in archaeology and visits colleagues at the Cotsen Institute often. Research Associate Lynn Schwartz Dodd recently received a Shelby White-Leon Levy Publication Grant for the publication of Tell al-Judaidah, the Later Phases. This is a 75year old excavation of the Oriental Institute of the University of Chicago; its early phases were published by pioneering archaeologist Robert Braidwood. Also, she spent June 2006 in Turkey at Kenan Tepe, located on the Tigris River in southeastern Turkey, completing the third and final year of research supported by an NEH Collaborative Research Grant. She and her colleagues are doing research into early social complexity during the Ubaid and Chalcolithic periods (fifth-fourth millennia BC). Her most recent publication is forthcoming: “Heritage Formulation in Overtly Politicised Environments: a commentary” to be published in the peer-reviewed journal Archaeologies. On October 7 2006, Charles Stanish, Director of the Cotsen Institute and Professor of Anthropology, was inducted into the American Academy of Arts and Science. Other inductees include former Presidents George H.W.
Backdirt: Annual Review

Philip de Barros, far right, with colleagues in Salt Lake City, UT.

NSF support will help pinpoint south Florida craft production data in time and space, providing radiocarbon dates and chemical sourcing data for key artifacts and deposits. In 2005, Christopher B. Donnan, Professor of Anthropology, was inducted into the American Academy of Arts & Sciences. Other inductees were William Rehnquist and Tom Brokaw. For more information, please visit: http:// Research Associate Janine Gasco, Associate Professor of Anthropology at Cal State Dominguez Hills, appeared in a History Channel documentary, “Engineering an Empire: The Aztecs,” which is part of the Engineering an Empire series. The show was first broadcast on October 30, 2006, but was rebroadcasted on November 12, 2006. Two other local Mesoamerican specialists, Manuel Aguilar (CSU, Los Angeles) and Frannie Berdan (CSU, San Bernardino) were also featured on the show. Elizabeth Klarich was recently appointed as Assistant Director of the Cotsen Institute. Elizabeth comes to us from University of California, Santa Barbara, where she received her Ph.D. in anthropological archaeology. John “Mac” Marston, Archaeology graduate student, received his M.A. in 2006. His thesis is entitled “Agency, Ritual, and Alcohol: The Origins of Foxtail Millet (Setaria italica) Agriculture in North China.” Archaeology graduate student Elizabeth Mullane received her M.A. in 2006. Her thesis is entitled “Patterns in the Past: Model Building and the Identification of Settlement Change in the Kahramanmarash Archaeological Survey Project, Turkey.”


Sitio Drago in Panama.

Bush and Bill Clinton.  For more information visit: http:// Christine Thompson, Classics graduate student, was awarded the Samuel H. Kress Traveling Fellowship from the Albright Institute of Archaeological Research for the next academic year, which is the only doctoral dissertation research fellowship that funds joint research and residency at the Albright Institute in Jerusalem and the American schools in Amman, Athens and Nicosia. Research Associate Melissa Vogel ’03 would like to thank Ron Steensland and Clemson University for supporting Project El Purgatorio. She and the rest of the project members completed a successful (if brief) second season this summer. El Purgatorio is the proposed capital city of the Casma culture, located on the north coast of Peru. Test excavations were conducted in two of the compounds in Sector A, where the majority of monumental architecture is located. They were delighted to find an even higher degree of preservation than expected, including such finds as embroidered cloth, fishing nets, woven mats, packets of human hair, and an abundance of seeds and dried fruit. Check their project Web site for updates:

The Sitio Drago Archaeological Project, led by Thomas A. Wake, Director of the Zooarchaeology Laboratory, has received generous support from Panama’s Secretaria Nacionál de Ciencia y Tecnología (SENACYT) for the 2007-2008 field season. Tomás Mendizábal, director of the Museo Anthropológico Reina Torres Araúz (MARTA), Panama’s national archaeological museum, will serve as Principal Investigator (PI), with Wake as Co-P.I. and overall Project Director. This phase of the project is designed in part to fertilize and further develop intellectual interchange between UCLA Cotsen Institute and Departamento Nacionál de Patrimonio Histórico (DNPH)/ MARTA both part of Panama’s Instituto Nacionál de Cultura. The 2007–2008 season will include advanced field and laboratory training for Panamanian archaeologists employed by MARTA and the DNPH, and students from the Universidád de Panamá and UCLA. The $49,700 awarded by SENACYT will support a ground penetrating radar survey of Sitio Drago followed by broad exposure excavation of any subsurface anomalies and selected surface mounds. Radiometric dating, ceramic sourcing, and analysis of plant and animal remains are also supported. As part of the award SENACYT also provides for the establishment of an interpretive center — Museo Arqueológico Boca del Drago — that will curate material collected from the site, serve as a research center, and provide interpretive information and exhibits for the Bocas del Toro region.


Backdirt: Annual Review

IN MEMORIAM H.B. “Nick” Nicholson of Redondo Beach, CA, passed away Friday, March 2, 2007, in his home. He was 81. Nicholson was a World War II Army veteran and Professor at UCLA for 35 years, specializing in Mesoamerican archaeology. He received his Ph.D. from Harvard University. His career in archaeology was remarkable and his knowledge of the iconography of the Aztecs was unsurpassed. He published numerous academic articles throughout his career, culminating in the publishing of his book Topiltzin Quetzalcoatl: The Once and Future Lord of the Toltecs. He was a brilliant historian and a remarkable archivist. He was preceded in death by his beloved wife Margaret in July 2005, and is survived by their three children and two grandchildren. Terry LeVine passed away on April 30, 2006. Unlike many scholars, Terry LeVine pursued an academic career and her interest in archaeology later in life. With a fascinating personal history that included growing up during the Depression and overcoming the crippling effects of polio, it is clear that Terry LeVine was never one to let life pass her by or slow her down. After marrying and raising three girls with her husband Mel, Terry decided to pursue her

passion for archaeology as a volunteer at the La Brea Tar Pits in Los Angeles. Quickly, this passion led to her enrolling in courses at Santa Monica College, and then transferring to UCLA. After receiving her Bachelor’s degree, Terry was encouraged by her colleagues to pursue a research project in the highlands of Peru that eventually led to her earning a Master’s degree. After finishing her doctorate in 1985, Terry taught classes through UCLA extension, Santa Monica College and Leisure Village. Terry is survived by her husband Melvin, three daughters, three grandchildren, and of course her contribution to the world of archaeology. p

Austin, TX, host to the 72nd annual meeting of the Society of American Archaeology, also has a paleontological activity area in the Nature and Science Center in Zilker Park, where Willeke Wendrich, Associate Professor, tried her luck excavating this dinosaur.
Photo by Hans Barnard.

Backdirt: Annual Review



Great generosity for a great future
By Shauna K. Mecartea

With a new gift of $10 million from Lloyd E. Cotsen, the Cotsen Institute of Archaeology is set to transform archaeology through its leadership and pioneering programs. Marking what is now the largest individual donation in the history of the UCLA College of Letters & Science, the new gift from Cotsen is intended to create the Cotsen Undergraduate Scholars Program to support undergraduate research, enhance the Cotsen Graduate Fellowship Program, establish the Lloyd Cotsen Research Prize for junior and senior archaeologists, launch the Archaeology Field Program globally in a first-time effort to standardize archaeological field training on a large scale, support the institute Publications Unit to bolster excellent archaeological publishing, augment faculty recruitment resources, and create the Cotsen Opportunity Endowment, a discretionary fund to be used by the institute Director to implement innovative programs promptly. The recent gift follows Cotsen’s first large donation of $7 million in 1999; a generous act that stimulated the Institute of Archaeology to change its name to the Cotsen Institute of Archaeology to honor Cotsen and his long-time involvement with the institute as a donor and volunteer since the 1960s. Cotsen was inspired to donate to the institute again for the same reason he donated previously: leadership. Over the years, Cotsen has recognized great visionaries at the Cotsen Institute whom he felt had the ability to transform archaeology. Since his first gift, Cotsen has noticed progress at the institute and looks forward to witnessing the continuing evolution under the leadership of by Charles Stanish, Director of the Cotsen Institute and Professor of Anthropology. “I think you’re going to get better by hiring quality people, attracting quality graduate students and publishing,” said Cotsen, noting that a publications program is a great tool to reach the public and make a lasting impression. Cotsen firmly believes that attracting top-quality graduate students and faculty is key to a successful future, and that the new gift can help enrich the current student and faculty pool as well. In addition to new initiatives, students and faculty, Cotsen emphasized that the Cotsen Institute will lead the way in site
Backdirt: Annual Review

conservation with the aid of the UCLA/Getty Program in Archaeological and Ethnographic Conservation, a Master’s program that is housed in the Cotsen Institute. His gifts over the last two decades are not completely representative of Cotsen’s involvement in archaeology. Since grade school, Cotsen was engrossed by history and archaeology. He read every archaeology book he could locate — even the ones he could not understand as a youth. While at Princeton University, he explored archaeology as a major, but realized the focus was limited to Greece and Rome – areas that were not of interest to him. After finishing his History degree at Princeton and waiting to matriculate in the fall at Harvard University, Cotsen took a summer job as a field architect in Greece in 1954. After his first season, he was offered a year and half fellowship at the site, marking an unforeseeable long and continuous relationship with Greece, fieldwork and the American School of Classical Studies at Athens. While pursuing his passion for archaeology, Cotsen completed his MBA at Harvard and proceeded to become President and CEO of Neutrogena Corp. in 1967 and 1973, respectively. His interest in archaeology has persisted, prompting him to collect archaeological and folk art assemblages and make them for study and education in various venues. “It’s an intellectual treasure hunt,” said Cotsen, emphasizing his fascination with discovering human origins. “What archaeologists can show us is a perspective about our history. One would like to know one’s roots and origins and how it happened.” With Cotsen’s help, the institute will continue its comprehensive and interdisciplinary study of the human past. “This gives the Cotsen Institute the largest de facto endowment in the world for the study of archaeology. Through his generosity, Lloyd Cotsen has ensured that archaeology at UCLA will thrive indefinitely, allowing us not only to study and preserve our global heritages, but to change people’s lives positively through the practice of archaeology,” Stanish said. p

UCLA receives Luce program grant
By Lother von Falkenhausen
UCLA was one of 15 institutions in North America invited to apply for an institutional improvement grant under the Henry T. Luce Foundation’s Initiative on East Asian Archaeology and Early History.  At the request of the Deans of Humanities and Social Sciences, a committee headed by Lothar von Falkenhausen (Professor of Art History and Associate Director of the Cotsen Institute of Archaeology) prepared the application. UCLA’s proposal was among the four that the Luce Foundation granted during the first round of the Initiative in 2006.  With the $450,000 obtained, augmented by 25 percent matching funds from the Cotsen Institute, we hope to make East Asian archaeology a centerpiece in UCLA’s pursuit of excellence in the social sciences and the humanities. Based on this vision, we shall (1) Add one new faculty position in East Asian archaeology (the search is currently being conducted); (2) Enhance the University’s library collections in East Asian archaeology; (3) Offer supplementary funding to talented graduate students of archaeology from East Asian countries; and (4) Support scholarly exchange to increase the exposure of East Asian archaeology in the wider academic community (an international conference on East Asian archaeology in its global contexts is planned for 2008–2009). UCLA is one of the few institutions in the Western world where teaching and research in East Asian archaeology have been ongoing throughout the past half-century. Connections to East Asia are strong, both at the individual and the institutional level, and UCLA has been collaborating with Peking University in a major, long-term archaeological fieldwork project in China since 1999.  There are already significant faculty strength in East Asian paleolithic archaeology (P. Jeffrey Brantingham, Assistant Professsor of Anthropology), Chinese Bronze Age archaeology (von Falkenhausen), the historical archaeology of early Japan (Donald F. McCallum, Professor of Art History), Southeast Asian historical archaeology (Robert L. Brown, Professor of Art History), and the study of Chinese excavated manuscripts (David Schaberg, Associate Professor of Asian Languages and Cultures).  The Cotsen Institute, with its East Asian Archaeology Laboratory, is providing an intellectual center for research in this area and for the training of graduate students. By enhancing its program in East Asian archaeology, UCLA is working towards redressing an imbalance of long standing in Western academia.  For in spite of China’s universally recognized status as one of the world’s areas of primary civilization—the only one where there is an abiding sense of political and linguistic continuity between the ancient civilization and the modern state—the archaeology of China and its East Asian hinterland has not so far been accorded scholarly attention commensurate to its importance. This marginal treatment has become all the less justifiable with the proliferation of important archaeological finds during recent decades.  There is now an urgent need to catch up with the new developments in the field, and to include the new evidence in a global, interdisciplinary framework of research; indeed, the present non-inclusion of East Asian data jeopardizes the very validity of cross-cultural generalizations. A sustained focus on East Asia is all the more desirable in view of the region’s ever-increasing prominence in today’s global community.  The generous grant from the Luce Foundation will enable UCLA to respond to these challenges and to remain at the forefront of what is without question one of the most dynamic fields in the humanities and social sciences today. p Lothar von Falkenhausen is Professor of Art History at UCLA and is the American co-principal investigator for he ongoing UCLAPeking University Joint Project on Landscape Archaeology and Ancient Salt Production in the Sichuan Region. He is currently serving as a visiting professor at Chinese University of Hong Kong.

Lothar von Falkenhausen (left) with one of his graduate students, Liangren Zhang, at his recent book launch for Chinese Society in the Age of Confucius (1000 – 250 BC):The Archaeological Evidence, published by the Cotsen Institute of Archaeology. Backdirt: Annual Review 23

First Saturday Open House a success
By Helle Girey
Archive Director and Professor of Anthropology. These tombs had not been looted in antiquity, and yielded a window to this magnificent culture at the coast. People entering the South Asian Archaeology Laboratory learned about the Sisupallgarh Project, co-directed by Lab Director and Anthropology Associate Professor Monica Smith. The project studies the ancient city of Sisupallgarh (third century BC to fourth century AD) in eastern India. The lab exhibited wonderful visuals of the dramatic walled city on computer monitors. The Egyptian Laboratory, directed by Near Eastern Languages & Cultures Associate Professor Willeke Wendrich, displayed experimental ceramics produced under conditions that prevailed in the desert in Egypt hundreds of years ago. The excavation survey at Fayum was also available for study, and people could have their names written in hieroglyphs. The Virtual Reality Laboratory took the visitors through the reconstructed Roman Forum from AD 400 and Jamaica’s Port Royal that was destroyed by an earthquake in 1692, allowing the visitors to virtually walk through the hallways and old streets of the sites. Step-by-step production of ceramic vessels was demonstrated by the Ceramic Research Group. The visitors were able to handle the clays at different stages of ceramic production. The Zooarchaeology Laboratory, directed by Thomas Wake, has always drawn a fascinated crowd of adults and children. With the LA Times promising the children a view of owl vomit, how could this lab be missed? There is nothing like looking at the tiny rodent bones and hair to understand the cause

On Saturday, May 6, 2006, the A-level doors of Fowler Building opened to the Los Angeles public for the tenth Open House at the Cotsen Institute of Archaeology at UCLA. The earliest arrivals were eight busloads of well behaved, uniformed children from six Los Angeles parochial schools. The “Big Yellow Bus Program” was provided by a foundation organized by Charlie Steinmetz, a strong supporter of archaeology at the Cotsen Institute and founding member of the Director’s Council. The plans for the children’s introduction to archaeology caught the attention of UCLA Media Relations, resulting in a full-page article in Los Angeles Times. Interested adults, students, curious children with parents, and Cub Scout Pack 23 quickly filled the labs and hallways. As the visitors entered the Cotsen Institute, they were immediately mesmerized by an enthusiastic Steinmetz and his bag of stone tools from the Fowler Museum’s Wellcome Collection. This collection has been used for many years to teach youngsters about archaeology. Walking through the Moche Archive the public learned about the Moche society of Sipán and Dos Cabezas, 1,600-year-old locations for royal tombs in northern coastal Peru, from Christopher Donnan,
Backdirt: Annual Review

and effect of natural processes in life! The Paleoethnobotany Laboratory, directed by Research Associate Virginia Popper, allowed visitors to look at tiny seeds through microscopes. Our visitors learned how the identification of bones and seeds leads to understanding of people’s diet and health in the past. The Rock Art Archive, directed by Jo Anne Van Tilburg, presented the ongoing research results from the Little Lake Rock Art Project in the Mojave Desert of California. Computer enhancements of images eroded by elements or vandalism were available on the computer screens. The Conservation Laboratory, directed by Art History and Conservation Professor David Scott, was awe inspiring due to their high-tech equipment used for measuring various elements present in metals or paint. Visitors could have their jewelry analyzed for percentages of gold and other elements. For example, one could find out if the ring they received was really 14 K gold! The Old World European Laboratory, directed by Anthropology Professor Emeritus James Sackett, had a table full of Paleolithic hand axes and other artifacts that were used to cut, grind and pound, and were available for the visitors to handle. The ongoing study of style in stone tools was carefully laid out — to look at, but not to touch. The video showing stone tool manufacturing using antlers and hammerstones to flake thin edged cutting tools was fittingly played in the corner. Ongoing excavation results from the Lofkënd burial tumulus in Albania were seen in the Classics Laboratory, directed by Classics Professor John Papadopoulous. The burials originated from eleventh/tenth and seventh/sixth centuries BC. The East Asia Laboratory, directed by Art History Professor Lothar von Falkenhausen, introduced survey results from China and Siberia. The younger visitors had a chance to rest in the Children’s Corner where they could color complicated Mesoamerican art, look at rock art styles from different cultures and try their hand at hieroglyphic writing. Numerous short lectures were presented by various Cotsen Institute affiliates: “Mysteries of Ancient Peru” by Charles Stanish, “A City with Domestic Houses: Spatial Distribution at Titris Höyük” by Yoko Nishimura, “Viking Age Chiefly Power in Iceland and the Mosfell Archaeological Project” by Davide Zori, “Ancient Music and Dance” by Julia Sanchez, and “The Process of Christianization in Norway According to a Zooarchaeologial Study: The Examples of Kaupang and Tonsberg” by Marianna Betti. These presentations gave an indication of the wide area of study at the Cotsen Institute and were meant to whet the appetite to hear longer presentations on similar topics through the Public Lecture Program. p Helle Girey is Director of Public Programs at the Cotsen Institute of Archaeology.

Backdirt: Annual Review


Toward a ritual economy: The 5th Cotsen Advanced Seminar
By E. Christian Wells and Patricia A. McAnany
Increasingly, economists have acknowledged that a major limitation to economic theory has been its failure to incorporate human values and beliefs as motivational factors. More to the point, the economic underpinnings of ritual practice are undertheorized and therefore not accessible to economists working on synthetic theories of human choice. On March 2–3, 2006, a group of economic anthropologists and archaeologists met for the 5th Cotsen Advanced Seminar of the Cotsen Institute of Archaeology at UCLA to initiate a rapprochement between economic theory and social theory. Organized by E. Christian Wells (University of South Florida) and Patricia A. McAnany (Boston University/ University of North Carolina), the seminar included the following participants: Katherine A. Spielmann (Arizona State University), John D. Monaghan (University of Illinois– Chicago), Walter E. Little (University at Albany, SUNY), Alan R. Sandstrom (Indiana University–Purdue University Fort Wayne), E. Paul Durrenberger (Pennsylvania State University), Susan M. Kus (Rhodes College), and Rhoda H. Halperin (Montclair University). Jeremy A. Sabloff (University of Pennsylvania) served as discussant. In addition, Colin Renfrew, Lothar von Falkenhausen, Pamela E. Sandstrom, Cathy Lynne Costin, and Marilyn Beaudry-Corbett attended portions of the seminar and contributed their comments. The immediate goal of the project was to forge an analytical vocabulary that would constitute the building blocks of a theory of ritual economy — the process of provisioning and consuming that materializes and substantiates worldview for managing meanings and shaping interpretations. By focusing on the intersection of cosmology and material transfers, this approach knits together ritual and economy — two realms of inquiry that often are sequestered into separate domains of knowledge. Ritual economy represents complex, dialectic, and interactive processes embedded within communities whose economic compositions vary according to local cultural and ecological landscapes. Fundamental to social constructions, this approach carries tremendous potential for understanding human society.
Backdirt: Annual Review

Grounding the discussion in actual case studies applied to both capitalistic and noncapitalistic settings across a number of different cultural contexts, seminar participants showed how the concept of ritual economy has broad relevance: all human societies require some form of ritual economy to materialize cultural meaning and social memory. Variation in the process of materialization leads to contrasting developmental trajectories, which give rise to diverse organizational strategies and local, historically contingent contexts for social action. Unfortunately, theory and methods for studying ritual economy are grossly underdeveloped. To address this shortfall, the Cotsen Advanced Seminar brought together scholars within anthropology who have devoted considerable energy towards the study of ritual practice and economic process. Assembled scholars considered the variable pathways through which ritual and economic practices articulate in the operation of societies, past and present. Our ultimate goal is to push economic theory towards a more socially informed perspective. p E. Christian Wells is Assistant Professor of Anthropology at the University of South Florida. Patricia McAnany is Associate Professor of Archaeology at Boston University.

Archaeology of Tiwanaku: The 6th Cotsen Advanced Seminar
By Alexei Vranich

On May 19 –21, 2006, the Cotsen Institute hosted a Cotsen people in the past lived. It appears that the Tiwanaku people Advanced Seminar on the archaeology of Tiwanaku, one of were particular about the manner they treated their daily most important archaeological cultures of South America and, and ritual remains and seemed to set them apart from other for its time (between AD 500 to 1000), the largest and most cultures and time periods. After a century of investigations oninfluential city before those of the better known Inca empire. site, archaeologists are still struggling with the question of who The discussion began well before the start of the conference as exactly were the people living next to these monuments, and a Web page in the style of Wikipedia allowed participants to what were they doing? Fortunately, Javier Escalante, Director of post their presentations and receive comments and even edits the Institute of Archaeology of Bolivia (DINAR), was specially from those attending. Attendees heard about the most recent invited to present the latest huge national effort on the two research on the Tiwanaku culture from excavations and surveys main monuments of the site. His insight that comes with 20 on-site itself, to the shore of Lake Titicaca and as far away years of active research at Tiwanaku filled in gaps on the state colonies located in the modern countries of Chile and Peru. of research at the site. Earlier and later periods also figured in the presentations as These presentations, and the recent results from the attendees discussed the importance and influence of Tiwanaku summer field season, will be presented in a volume edited by in the culture period of the Andes. the Cotsen Institute. p A question and answer period followed each individual Alexei Vranich is a Research Associate at the University of presentation, but as the day continued, it became clear that Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology. a common interest was the manner the Tiwanaku culture spread across the southern Andes and the effect it had on local populations. As for the site of Tiwanaku, with its megalithic stones and iconic pieces of architecture such as the Gateway of the Sun, the most famous piece of Andean pre-Columbian architecture, “garbage” was a key theme. How it was made, treated and disposed of was a livelier subject debate than the meaning of the famous monumental core of the site. My personal view is that this interest was in part because monumental architecture is so unique and only a handful of examples exist, however, all archaeologists find garbage (or to use the more archaeologically correct term, midden) and while less glamorous, it is the primary source of information to learn about how Photograph of the Tiwanaku site in Bolivia. Above: a huge crowd gathers at the site for a festival.
Backdirt: Annual Review



High above Mesopotamia: An archaeological summer in the Central Near Eastern Highlands
By Gregory Areshian
Many fascinating chapters in the great book of Near Eastern archaeology still remain unwritten for several reasons. Incoherencies between traditional fieldwork and the development of new theoretical approaches, disciplinary limits, or the partition of the region by modern national borders that impede in many cases an implementation of unified, conceptually integral field programs, may be mentioned. The modern political divisions affect our perceptions of the past and encourage the proliferation of local nationalistic archaeologies. Thus, for example, many specialists in the field don’t perceive pre-Elamite Susiana (southwestern Iran) as an integral part of the Mesopotamian civilization or, to the contrary, general studies that summarize the archaeology of Iran usually do not include comprehensive accounts of the Mesopotamian archaeological evidence pertaining to the

Achaemenid period. The impact of the Iraq–Iran modern borderline may be recognized in that case. The archaeologists who work in southeastern Turkey from the Upper Tigris in the east to the Euphrates in the west and to the south from the Eastern Taurus mountains usually refer to that area as Southeastern Anatolia, which is an obvious modernization, because, by virtually any count, as it has been most recently (2004) demonstrated by the atlas published by S. Anastasio, M. Lebeau, and M. Sauvage, that that region must be viewed as Northern Mesopotamia. But in that case, why don’t we call the heartland of Assyria and the basins of the Khabur and Balikh rivers — “Middle Mesopotamia”? To the north from the boundary of Mesopotamia, in the Central Near Eastern Highlands the situation has been even more complicated. That geographically and at times culturally integral region laying between the Eastern Taurus in the south and the steppes of Southern Russia in the north now is divided between six  nations: Iran, Turkey, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia, and Russia (looking from south to north). Until the collapse of the Iron Curtain, Soviet scholars working in the northern and central parts of the Central Near Eastern Highlands (usually called at that time for geopolitical reasons Transcaucasia) had no possibility to carry out fieldwork in the southern part of the same region, whereas Western archaeologists could not excavate in the northern sector. Today the situation has changed dramatically and Western scholars and expeditions are welcomed in former

Armenian medieval monastery at Tegher, completed at the beginning of the thirteenth century. Roof stone tiles restored in the 1970s – 1980s. 28
Backdirt: Annual Review

The Acropolis mound of Dvin, Armenia.

Transcaucasia, especially in Armenia and Georgia. These countries are archaeological heavens. In Armenia more than 6,000 archaeological sites have been registered so far. Dating from the Early Paleolithic through the Late Middle Ages, they wait for their students and excavators. Currently, the general archaeological situation in Armenia may be summarized in the following few sentences: Due to the intensive research carried out by four generations of local archaeologists there has been an accumulation of a vast amount of archaeological data. Most of the excavations of the last four decades were quite well documented. More than half of the excavated material still remains unpublished and very few attempts have been made to create synthetic archaeological-anthropological-historical works clarifying issues related to that region of the Near East. Different periods and types of sites have been studied disproportionately. Thus, ample opportunities exist both for new extensive and intensive fieldwork and for interpreting the already excavated bountiful data by means of contemporary theories in anthropological and historical archaeology. Traveling to Armenia on an archaeological mission during last July and August, I was positively surprised by a major revival in archaeological fieldwork. After a complete halt of excavations in the early 1990s that followed the disintegration of the Soviet Union and the consequent drastic deterioration of research activities virtually in every field of sciences and the humanities, the last five to six years have been witnessing a rebirth of the Armenian archaeology, yet on a totally new foundation of international cooperation. More than half of the total fieldwork currently is conducted in collaboration with Western institutions. A French expedition from the CNRS (C. Chataigner and P. Lombard) together with Armenian colleagues

have found near Kalavan (with B. Gasparyan) an open-air camp of the Upper Paleolithic, a period that was virtually unknown in Armenia from systematic excavations before this discovery, and excavated two Neolithic settlements (Aratashen and Aknashen, sixth millennium BC) in the Ararat Plain (with R. Badalyan). An astounding discovery of a Chalcolithic settlement occupying a surface of more than 15 hectares has been made near the village of Godedzor in the province of Syunik (P. Avetisyan). Previously, our knowledge concerning the Chalcolithic of the Central Near Eastern Highlands was essentially derived from typical tells formed by remains of mud-brick buildings and located on the flatlands of valleys surrounded by mountain chains. Godedzor is very different since the settlement itself is located at a high altitude, on a mountain slope, not far from a source of obsidian. AmericanArmenian Project ArAGATS, directed by A. Smith of the University of Chicago, continues a broad-scale excavation of the Early and Late Bronze Age settlement at Gegharot (ca. 3000 – 2500 BC and ca. 1500 – 1400 BC) and of a town (ca. 45 hectares) belonging to the times of the early Achaemenid Empire at Tsakahovit in the zone near alpine pastures. During the last few years, extensive surveys have been conducted by an Italian-Armenian expedition in the Sevan Lake basin (R. Biscione, S. Hmayakyan, N. Parmegiani, Y. Sayadyan) and by a German team in the Syunik Province (S. Kroll). An expedition from Brown University (directors S. Alcock and J. Cherry)

H. Sargisyan and A. Smith before opening an Early Bronze Age intramural tomb at Gegharot.
Backdirt: Annual Review


started a detailed survey pursuing landscape archaeology designed to create some basis for the development of future goals, which is combined with a settlement excavation at joint American-Armenian field projects. Among the most Shaghat (Middle Bronze Age and late first millennium impressive sites that I had the chance to revisit was the Final BC). Two other international Late Bronze – Early Iron Age projects are focused on the (ca. 1300 – 800 BC) fortress of excavations of a large Urartian Tghit. Erected on the summit fortress (eighth to seventh of one of the mountains of centuries BC) near Aramus (the the Tsakhkunyats range at Austrian-Armenian expedition, the elevation of 2,000 – 2,100 A. Čolič, H. Avetisyan) and m above the sea level, it was at the capital of Hellenistic built of gigantic basalt rocks. Armenia Artaxata-Artashat on The cyclopean masonry of the the banks of Araxes River (an three rows of its fortification Italian-Armenian mission, G. walls, towers, and gates that Traina and Zh. Khachatryan). still rise to the height of A thrilling discovery was made more than 6 m above the by a group of Armenian and unexcavated modern surface Israeli archaeologists who rivals that of Tiryns and uncovered multiple tombstones An Early Iron Age tumulus (kurgan) on the southern shore of Lake Sevan, ca Mycenae. During the several 1100 – 800 BC. with Hebrew inscriptions dated days devoted to the survey, between AD 1266 and 1337 at the Jewish cemetery amid the carried out together with S. Hmayakyan and Yu. Sayadyan, remains of the town Yeghegis where the main residence of the in the Sevan Lake basin near the village of Chkalovka we Armenian Orbelian princes of Vayots-Dzor was located (M. discovered two caves, each measuring more than 150 m2 inside Stone, H. Melkonian). As a sign of general improvement we which contain substantial layers of cultural deposits. must mention also that several Armenian archaeologists have We (A. Kalantaryan, K. Ghafadaryan, and the author) had restarted their interrupted fieldwork, although with totally another important fieldtrip aimed at an exploration of current insignificant financial resources and insufficient technical conditions of the tell of Dvin in the Ararat Plain, which is one support and equipment. These small-scale excavations have, of the largest archaeological sites in the Central Near Eastern nevertheless, produced quite interesting results such as the Highlands. Its central mound rising above the plain by more discovery of an Early Bronze Age metallurgical workshop at than 30 m was formed by at least 22 – 24 m of cultural deposits, Shengavit and of a Middle Bronze Age “royal” tomb at Nerkin the upper layers of which contained the vestiges of the capital of Naver (both by H. Simonyan), new Middle and Late Bronze Armenia during the fifth through ninth centuries AD. During Age (second millennium BC) burials at Lori-Berd (S. Devejian), the period of its maximum expansion in the Middle Ages an Urartian fortress with a the city occupied a territory cultic building at Oshakan (A. of more than two and a half Kalantaryan), new stratigraphic square kilometers. Despite sequence at the Urartian city the fact that four generations of Erebuni (F. Ter-Martirosov), of Armenian archaeologists the foundations of the main have dug at Dvin, most of temple (eighth century BC) the site remains unexcavated in the Eastern Citadel of and essential archaeologicalArgishtikhinili, which was anthropological-historical the principal northern center questions are still unanswered. of the Urartian Empire (I. Even the stratigraphy of the Karapetyan). Small-scale site remains unknown. We excavations of medieval sites only know that on the central have been resumed at the mound several levels of an fortress of Bjni (I. Gharibyan) unexcavated Early Iron Age and at the monasteries and citadel lie approximately at The donjon of a Medieval castle in Dashtadem, tenth through thirteenth churches at Ushi, Vardenik, and centuries AD. a depth of 6 – 8 m below the Talin (G. Sargsyan, F. Babayan). surface. Deeper levels exposed The purpose of my trip was to assess the prospects of by erosion and very limited cleanings of exposures on the slope cooperation between the Cotsen Institute and archaeological of the mound provided us with artifacts of the Early Bronze organizations in Armenia, to visit several ongoing excavations Age (middle of the third millennium BC). The excavations and important sites, and to conduct a limited survey work were interrupted in 1994 because of inadequate financing
Backdirt: Annual Review

Cyclopean masonry of the fortress at Tghit, ca 1300-800 BC.

and our Armenian colleagues have been looking since then for opportunities to resume the investigations. After my trip, the Director of the Cotsen Institute, Charles Stanish, taking into consideration the prospects of archaeological studies in Armenia, signed an agreement with the Institute of Archaeology and Ethnology of the Armenian National Academy of Sciences regarding a broad-based archaeological cooperation, the focal point of which will become the reactivation of the excavations at Dvin. These excavations will shed light on multiple archaeological questions related to the studies of

Near Eastern civilizations from the Early Bronze Age (if not earlier) through the Byzantine and Islamic periods preceding the Mongol conquest. More than that, they will allow us to clarify the trajectories of sociocultural development, which led the civilizations of this region from a position of centrality during the Urartian Empire and the Armenian civilization of Late Antiquity to a position of marginality in the Middle Ages that has persisted into modern times. p Gregory Areshian is a Research Associate at the Cotsen Institute.

Members of the University of Chicago Expedition with Armenian participants and the author in Aparan.
Backdirt: Annual Review


Too many elites?
By Elizabeth Arkush

Figure 1: Plan of Cerro Inca (AZ3), a hilltop fortified site of the LIP in the northern Titicaca Basin near Azángaro. Houses with external diameter > 4 m are shown in black.

You can’t shake a stick in archaeology without hitting an elite, or a clique of them. This term, so useful in anthropological theorizing, covers a huge range of social statuses — from those with just slightly more things, prerogatives, or clout, to the fabulously privileged nobility of highly stratified societies. Perhaps there is a downside to the ease with which the category is applied in archaeology. (In the ethnographic literature, which tends to use context-specific terms instead, one hardly ever encounters an “elite.”) How much richer, more powerful, or more ostentatious does one have to be than average to be considered elite — two standard deviations or so? Does the term, reminiscent of patrician Rome and European aristocracies, tend to oversimplify our thinking about the various kinds of social relationships between people associated with somewhat more or superior items of material culture, and people with somewhat less? “Elites” are easy to find, because these sorts of differences in material culture are easy to find; but, that fact in itself tells us remarkably little. I stumbled across this issue recently while discussing with a colleague differences in house size within settlements in the Peruvian highlands near Lake Titicaca. I was thinking of unusually large houses as possible elite residences; he had pondered whether they might have belonged to larger (perhaps extended) families with greater needs for space. The difference was that I was working on a time period immediately preceding the Inca conquest of the region (the Late Intermediate Period or LIP, ca. AD 1100–1450), when ethnohistoric documents tell of remembered warlords holding powerful sway over large regions; he was working on a settlement spanning late Archaic to very early agricultural times. Our assumptions about the
Backdirt: Annual Review

sociopolitical complexity of our time periods had pushed our archaeological interpretations in different directions, so that he would not think of applying the term “elite” to his houses, while I assumed elites were present at my sites. Yet the difference in house size was comparable, even though his site was much smaller and the houses much fewer. One problem with elites is that they are sometimes easier to assume based on later testimonies than to find on the ground. (Spanish chroniclers and colonizers found it just as convenient to describe and negotiate with binary categories of indigenous lords and peasants as we archaeologists do with elites and commoners). But house sizes at LIP hilltop forts in the northern Titicaca region form a skewed bell curve rather than a bimodal distribution (Figure 1); there is no distinct category of obviously elite houses, a pattern which has been noted elsewhere in the Andean highlands. The largest houses are weakly clustered in space — they tend to be located towards the higher parts of these hilltop sites (Figure 2) — but they are in no way spatially segregated from average or small houses. Who, then, was living in the larger houses, and why? The contact-period accounts refer to war leaders in the pre-Inca times, apparently ranging from semi-hereditary warlords to men who held power for only as long as a war lasted. What if the houses simply held larger families? Of course, larger families, with their larger production capacity and larger potential kin network within and beyond the local community, might be one of the ingredients of “elite” status in the first place. Or large houses and large families might result from other achievements. Elsa Redmond (1998) describes the career of Utitiája, a prominent Jivaro (Shuar) war leader of the early twentieth century who was much sought after in Shuar alliances and war expeditions. Visiting Westerners noted the unusual size of Utitiája’s house and the impressive expanse of his manioc and tuber fields. Utitiája had no hereditary post or official status; his power was

Figure 2: Histogram of house foundation diameters at five northern Titicaca Basin fortified sites of the LIP.

specific to his time, his skills in war, and the marriages and webs of obligation he won with those skills. To an archaeologist, his house would unquestionably be interpreted as “elite,” yet the term does nothing to indicate the nature of his privilege. In retrospect, my archaeological imagination had been clouded by the vagueness of that word. I had not considered what exactly constituted “eliteness” at the sites I was mapping. One site, for instance, in addition to its 150 house foundations, has five corrals, five large clusters of storage structures (and two much smaller clusters), and six clusters of tombs. Presumably, then, there were distinct social groups — kin groups — within the site, each owning camelids and managing storage collectively to at least some degree. Might not a whole kin group be “elite,” due to the fecundity of its flocks and the prominence of its ancestors? If so, did it have more weight in community decisions, and how much more? Or were there instead “elites” in each kin group, patriarchs or appointed leaders who were decisionmakers within the group and the spokespeople in negotiations with the other groups? Were any of these kinds of “eliteness” related to leadership in war? A host of worthwhile questions were hidden behind that obscuring word. Such abstractions are wonderful tools for thought until they become substitutes for thought. p
References Redmond, Elsa 1998 War and peace:  Alternative paths to centralized leadership. In Chiefdoms and Chieftaincy in the Americas, edited by E. Redmond, pp. 68103. Gainesville: University Press of Florida.

Elizabeth Arkush, a recent graduate of UCLA’s Anthropology program, is Assistant Professor of Anthropology at the University of Virginia.

Searching for ancient proteins
By Hans Barnard

Eastern Desert Ware sherds EDW 17 and 48 from Berenike (on the Egyptian Red Sea coast) and EDW 232 and 234 from the Mons Smaragdus area (Wadi Sikait).

As a Research Associate of the Cotsen Institute since 2001, I have participated, mostly as an archaeological surveyor, in field projects affiliated to the Institute in Egypt (co-directed by Dr. Willeke Wendrich), Iceland (directed by Dr. John Steinberg), Chile (co-directed by Dr. Ran Boytner) and, most recently, in Panama (directed by Dr. Tom Wake). My own research involves a corpus of hand-made ceramic vessels identified as Eastern Desert Ware. These are mostly small cups and bowls found in southeast Egypt and northeast Sudan in contexts dating to the fourth through sixth century CE (Barnard 2002, 2006). Sites in the Nile Valley that have produced this type of pottery, usually in small quantities within much larger amounts of GrecoRoman (Egyptian) or Meroitic (Sudanese) vessels, are now lost under the waters of Lake Nasser. During the UNESCO Nubian Monuments Salvage Campaign, in the 1960s, some Eastern Desert Ware sherds and vessels were moved to several museums rendering them available for further study (Barnard and Strouhal 2004; Barnard et al. 2006). The rest of the corpus has since been found in the desert between the Nile and the Red Sea in settlements associated with the ancient mines, quarries and harbors in this arid wasteland (Barnard and Magid, in press; Barnard and Rose, in press). The distribution and technology of the sherds has led to the assumption that the vessels were made and used by the pastoral nomads indigenous to the region and referred to in historical sources (Barnard 2005). One of the elements of my study entails the analysis and interpretation of the organic residues in the vessels. A common way to do so is to examine the lipids trapped in the ceramic matrix (Barnard et al. 2006; Barnard et al. in press). For this a small fragment of the pot is crushed into powder to which a mix of organic solvents is added, after which the resulting solution is analyzed by gas chromatography combined with mass spectrometry (GC/MS). The main advantage of this method is that the resulting mass spectra can be compared with a digital library containing spectra of many known molecules, allowing a relatively secure identification of the unknown ancient molecules. The main disadvantage is that the suite of naturally occurring lipids (including fatty acids, acylglycerols, cholesterol, steroids and terpenoids) is limited. A positive identification of the lipids rarely leads to a certain identification of the source of the residue as the same molecules occur in many of the possible sources. Two avenues have been proposed to maximize the information obtained by organic residue analysis (Barnard et al. in press). One involves the identification of “bio-marker molecules” thought to be more or less specific for certain food groups. The other recommends looking at the ratio of selected fatty acids that may be specific for certain food groups. About a hundred Eastern Desert Ware sherds have been subjected to a combination of the described analytical techniques, initially with advice by Dr. Stuart Tyson Smith (Department of Anthropology, UCSB) but mostly with the help of Alek Dooley and Dr. Kym Faull (Pasarow Mass Spectrometry Laboratory, UCLA). All sherds preserved lipid residues indicating that the
Backdirt: Annual Review


Chromatogram of the organic residue in EDW 50. Each peak corresponds with a compound that can be tentatively identified by comparing the associated mass spectrum with those of known molecules.

A SDS-PAGE gel on which the peptides isolated from four ancient vessels were separated in horizontal bands (the many black dots are surplus Sypro Ruby dye).

vessels were most likely used for food. The residue in EDW 50, for example, contains a series of saturated fatty acids with 12 – 24 carbon atoms (indicated as C12 through C24) common in most organic residues. The mono-unsaturated oleic (C18:1) and erucic (C22:1) acids could indicate a vegetable or a marine origin of the residue, as could oxysebacic acid (an oxidation product of longer mono-unsaturated fatty acids). The presence of phytanic acid, cholestadienol, mono-acylglycerols (MAG) and di-acylglycerols (DAG) support the assumption that the residue is most likely of fish. This is concurrent with the fact that the vessel was excavated in a settlement near the Red Sea coast. Most other residues were interpreted as originating from seeds or berries, which is reminiscent of the diet of the modern Bedouin in the area. Despite these interesting findings I searched for a method that could potentially yield more specific results. One possibility would have been stable carbon and nitrogen isotope analysis of the residues (Barnard et al., in press). Instead, I decided to try
Backdirt: Annual Review

The author while dissolving ceramics in the extremely corrosive hydrofluoric acid (HF).

analyzing the proteins (or peptides) preserved in the ancient vessels. Proteins are very long chains of amino-acids, folded in intricate ways, coded for by DNA. They could potentially be very specific for the source of any organic residue, but are difficult to work with and precious little work has been done on aged, and partly denatured, proteins. It is assumed that proteins that are very tightly attached to the ceramic matrix can survive for a long time. One way to free such molecules is to dissolve the

ceramic matrix, using the extremely corrosive hydrofluoric acid. Again, aided by Alek Dooley and Dr. Kym Faull I tried to do so, but with little success. Upon the suggestion of Micala Rider (Department of Anthropology, University of Arizona) and with the help of Lori Shoemaker (UCLA Interdepartmental Neuroscience Ph.D. Program), I proceeded by trying to wash the proteins off of a relatively large volume of pottery powder (5g shaken overnight in a buffered detergent solution). The resulting suspension was concentrated and loaded on a gel, after which the proteins were separated by an electric current. The first four samples all produced positive results. The next steps will be identifying the proteins, by tandem mass spectrometry, and to search for their possible sources. The results will then be combined with the on-going analysis of the ceramic paste, as well as my reproduction experiments (Barnard, in press), to better understand both these remarkable vessels and the people that once made and used them. p
References Barnard, H. 2002 Eastern Desert Ware. A first introduction. Sudan and Nubia 6, pp. 53-57. 2005 Sire, il n’y a pas de Blemmyes. A re-evaluation of historical and archaeological data. In People of the Red Sea: Proceedings of the Red Sea Project II, edited by J.C.M. Starkey. Oxford, Archaeopress, pp. 23-40. 2006 Eastern Desert Ware. Fine Pottery from an Arid Wasteland. Egyptian Archaeology 28, pp. 29-30. in press Suggestions for the Chaîne Opératoire of Nomadic Pottery Sherds. In The Archaeology of Mobility: Nomads in the Old and in the New World, edited by Hans Barnard and Willeke Z. Wendrich. Los Angeles, Cotsen Institute of Archaeology. Barnard, H., S.H. Ambrose, D.E. Beehr, M.D. Forster, R.E. Lanehart, M.E. Malainey, R.E. Parr, M. Rider, C. Solazzo and R.M. Yohe II 2006 Mixed results of seven methods for organic residue analysis to one vessel with the residue of a known foodstuff. Journal of Archaeological Science 33. Barnard, H., A.N. Dooley and K.F. Faull 2006 New Data on the Eastern Desert Ware from Sayala (Lower Nubia) in the Kunsthistorisches Museum, Vienna. Ägypten und Levante 15: 49-64. Barnard, H. and A.A. Magid in press Eastern Desert Ware from Tabot (Sudan). More links to the North. Archaeologie du Nil Moyen 10. Barnard, H. and P.J. Rose in press Eastern Desert Ware from Berenike and Kab Marfu’a. In Berenike 1999-2000. Report of the 1999 and 2000 excavations in Berenike, Siket and Wadi Kalalat and the survey of the Egyptian Eastern Desert, including Sikait (Mons Smaragdus), edited by S.E. Sidebotham and W.Z. Wendrich. Los Angeles, Cotsen Institute of Archaeology. Barnard, H. and E. Strouhal 2004 Wadi Qitna revisited. Annals of the Naprstek Museum, Prague 25: 29-55.

Colonization of the Tibetan Plateau
By P. Jeffrey Brantingham
One of their central theoretical observations made formal in MacArthur and Wilson’s acclaimed 1967 book, The Theory of Island Biogeography, was that the successful colonization of new landscapes by any population is determined by a delicate balance between fertility and immigration rates, on the one hand, and mortality and emigration rates, on the other. Only in those environments where the summed effects of fertility and immigration exceed those of mortality and emigration will a population be able to establish itself. The Tibetan Plateau, the largest continuous high-elevation area on the planet, offers a textbook case for studying the biogeography of the initial colonization of harsh landscapes. The long, cold winters, sparse precipitation and chronic low oxygen availability on the high Plateau (>3,000 m above sea level) all tend to depress fertility and increase mortality rates to levels where it is difficult to sustain populations without some additional process at work. Our team of archaeologists and geologists has just completed the first five years of research on the northern Tibetan Plateau looking for evidence of the earliest colonists with the goal of assessing the behavioral strategies that they used to survived in this harsh environment. The results are unexpected and controversial. Our initial hypothesis centered on the idea that novel cultural adaptations — new forms of social organization and sophisticated foraging strategies — that emerged during the early Upper Paleolithic around 35,000 years ago would have been sufficient to offset the added costs of life at high elevation. We predicted that initial colonization of the Tibetan Plateau would have occurred at around this time and this prediction was supported by the work of population geneticists who noted that contemporary Tibetans have evolved unique physiological adaptations that allow them to process oxygen more efficiently than the average sea-level resident; the implication being that a long period of residence at high elevation, perhaps 30,000 years, was necessary for such traits to evolve. Having covered tens of thousands of kilometers in regional survey over the past five years we have succeeded in identifying only one early Upper Paleolithic site, located in the Lenghu basin (2,800 m above sea level), that dates to the period between ca. 24,000 and 32,000 years ago. Much to our surprise, we have been forced to conclude that, even if the novel adaptations of the early Upper Paleolithic would have been sufficient to ensure a measure of survival on the Tibetan Plateau, there were insufficient pressures within the potential source populations in low elevation environments to drive colonization at this time. Our surveys and excavations have identified a more significant human presence on the Tibetan Plateau between 15,000 and 11,000 years ago, particularly in the Qinghai Lake
Backdirt: Annual Review

Hans Barnard is a Research Associate at the Cotsen Institute.


A map of Tibet showing the locations of some of the sites identified by the Tibet Paleolithic Project. 1. Lenghu basin; 2. Jiangxigou and Heimahe; 3. Xidatan 2; 4. Source of obsidian found at Xidatan and Jiangxigou.

basin. But, astonishingly, there is little evidence to suggest that these late Upper Paleolithic groups, with their sophisticated microblade technologies and focus on small game subsistence, were present on the Plateau any more than seasonally. Not only are the known sites of this period, such as Jiangxigou 1 and Heimahe 1, located close to mountain passes at the Plateau margins, allowing for easy ascent and descent, but they also are small and ephemeral, temporary hunting locations rather than long-term encampments that might be expected for yearround occupations. Controversially, we conclude that, despite the innovations of the late Upper Paleolithic, conditions at the end of the Pleistocene were similarly insufficient to encourage full-time colonization of the high Plateau. The first evidence that appears to document year-round

we have found evidence for the movement of obsidian tool stone over distance as long as 1,200 km, suggesting that large-scale social networks may be the key to survival in high elevation extremes. We believe that this late timing of full-time colonization is not coincidental in that this is also the period when agricultural adaptations begin to fluoresce in the lowelevation environments that surround the Plateau, for example the Dadiwan Neolithic in western Gansu. We have proposed therefore that the missing ingredient, absent during the late Pleistocene, was some form of competitive pressure in low elevation environments that would have driven foragers to colonize high-elevation extremes. If this hypothesis holds true in future research, then the process of initial full-time colonization of the Tibetan Plateau would closely resemble ethnohistorically observed cases of agriculturalists and pastoralists excluding foragers from prime habitats thereby driving them to occupy increasingly marginal environments. p
References: Brantingham, P. J., and Gao, X 2006 Peopleing of the Northern Tibetan Plateau. World Archaeology 38: 387-414. MacArthur, R. H., and Wilson, E. O 1967 The Theory of Island Biogeography. Princeton University Press, Princeton.


3 cm

A microblade core and obsidian flake tool from Xidatan 2 dated to 8,200 years ago. Such technologies are representative of the Epi-Paleolithic on the high elevation Tibetan Plateau.

occupation of the Tibetan Plateau comes from the site of Xidatan 2 (4,300 m above sea level) and several larger sites in the Qinghai Lake basin all of which date to 8,200 to 6,400 years ago. These sites are Epi-Paleolithic in character and
Backdirt: Annual Review

P. Jeffrey Brantingham is Assistant Professor of Anthropology. His Web site can be found at

Non-linear archaeology
By Giorgio Buccellati
Frequent though it is in common parlance, the term “non-linear” generally exhibits a vague frame of reference (it has a precise meaning in some technical contexts such as mathematics or physics). Perhaps by virtue of its novelty and of the inadequate definition generally given of it, the very term “non-linear” is evoked with almost a sense of awe (I retain here the hyphenated spelling to emphasize the contrast with “linear”). An explanation of its import may help to put both term and concept in sharper focus. The very fact that a positive term is missing to refer to nonlinearity suggests that the field is still wide open for a clarification of the issue. Let me begin by proposing such a term, which will help define the concept. The term is “polyhedral.” Just as the adjective “linear” refers to the geometric figure of a line, i. e., a point moving along a fixed direction, so the adjective “polyhedral” refers to the geometric figure of a solid bounded by polygons, such as the cube represented in Figure 1. A linear argument that proposes to link conceptually points A and Z has to travel along points b and c (Figure 2). A polyhedral argument, on the other hand, travels directly, across the solid, from A to Z (Figure 3). The power and demonstrability of a polyhedral argument rely on a prior knowledge of the whole (the cube) and of its properties. In other words, non-linear” thought, in order to be properly “thought” and not just hit or miss surfing or browsing, must be associated with an underlying knowledge of the structural whole within which the non-linear “jump” occurs. It is only by virtue of this knowledge that A can arguably (i.e., demonstrably) be linked with Z: since the whole structure of the cube is presupposed, the linear possibility of the link (Figure 2) is also virtually known, even if the intermediate steps are not articulated as such. It is also as a result of the prior knowledge of the underlying structure (represented figuratively as a polyhedron) that the linkage takes place along the shortest line. Hence the power: the finer the prior knowledge, the most direct the linkage. And hence the demonstrability: one can refer back to the nature of the solid and show how the link between the two is possible. Such a knowledge is “polyhedral”

because it does not rely solely on points b and c, but rather on the whole solid figure (the cube or polyhedron), of which b and c are as much part as A and Z. Without a supporting structure such as the cube, points A and Z are floating in space, and if so their linkage (Figure 4) results from a hit or miss shot in the dark. This is what happens with intuition. In this case, a connection between A and Z is perceived through a logical short-circuit, one that does not presuppose the argument (i.e., the linear sequence A-b-c-Z) and cannot therefore be demonstrated — at least, not on the basis of the original intuition. But we all know that in most cases it is precisely such an intuition that initiates the process of discovery. A proper polyhedral argument is one that, building on such an intuition, shows how the linkage is possible, and therefore arguable. It is further worth noting that, strictly speaking, even the linkage represented in Figure 3 remains linear, since the linkage is indeed a line. When referring to the actual flow of an argument, then “linear” means in fact “multilinear” or “poly-segmental” and “non-linear” means “virtually monosegmental.” The argument’s process represented in Figure 2 is linear, but it consists of many segments. The argument process represented in Figure 3, on the other hand, is also linear, but, as it cuts across the polyhedron in the most direct way, it consists of a single segment which jumps across intermediate steps because of the known structure of the whole. It is important to note that the concept hiding behind the mystique is by no means novel. To look at cases of pre-digital non-linearity is instructive, especially in an archaeological perspective. Think of the introduction of writing: its broader significance is generally linked to the power of specificity it conveys (e.g., proper names) or its socio-economic import (e.g., the recording of transactions). But an even greater significance can be seen in the impact it had on conceptual modeling. Thus the tabular structure of a Mesopotamian written ledger is exquisitely non-linear, the conceptual “polyhedron” being defined by the coherence with which cells and their values are located in the overall matrix. Or think of such disparate examples as long term observations of recurrent celestial phenomena, and the consequent establishment of calendars (which crystallize the perception of the recurrence of time); the organizational control

Z b c












Backdirt: Annual Review


of long distance trade (with the inherent mental connection of the intermediate steps from obtaining raw materials to exploiting the final markets); the technical ability to establish an industrial mode of production (coordinating multiple resources and individuals none of whom is aware of the overall chain of events); the metrical organization of discourse in poetry (the expectation of overarching patterns channels the flow in given directions and invokes attention to non-sequential moments in that flow). All of these and countless more cases presuppose the coherence of a whole within which the argument flows from one point to the next, or jumps across them in virtue precisely of the structural cohesion of the whole. Let us consider in more detail another instance of nonlinear thinking — a map. To go from point A to point Z you follow a line, hence the directions formulated as a string of words are indeed linear. Their representation on a map is linear or poly-segmental, because the line goes through intermediate points. Alternate sequences are also possible: you may get from A to Z through c and d, or through e and f. The evaluation of these alternatives is akin to an argument: how best can you reach the target point, or what are the respective merits of the different paths? On the other hand, the realization that points A and Z as shown on the map can be linked is non-linear or monosegmental: the connection is virtual because of the properties of the map. Mark well: non-linearity pertains primarily to the way in which the map is constructed. As in the case of a polyhedron, a map is built as a coherent whole, based on specific rules that spell out the organization of space and the systemic correlation of points on a plane. The confidence with which we ultimately get proper directions (alternatively: the confidence with which we con construe the linear argument that links points A and Z) derives from the expectation that the presupposed whole is coherent (scale, proportionality along axes, etc.). The whole is properly non-linear (polyhedral) in two ways — (1) how it is constructed, and (2) how this construct is presupposed when being used. So the linear use (the directions) depends intimately on the non-linear structure of the whole (the map as a given organization of space). The fact that very early plans and maps exist (from Mesopotamia in the third millennium BC to Soleto in Puglia in the fifth century BC) is indicative of how intuitive the basic process is, no matter how precise the underlying polyhedral structure may or may not be. By no means self-evident, the graphic organization of space shown by these early maps represents a major conceptual leap. It was not grounded in theoretical explicitness, but it shows full awareness of the coherence of the presupposed non-linear, polyhedral system. The map as a graphic organization of space points to another important distinction, that between non-linear thought and non-linear representation of thought. Writing had a profound impact on human self-perception precisely because it objectified thought. Even when it does not translate to complex graphic representations (e.g., a cuneiform ledger does not yet
Backdirt: Annual Review

result in the creation of bar histograms), writing gives thoughts and thought processes an extra-somatic embodiment which can be manipulated independently of their original locus, the human mind. A Mesopotamian dictionary, for instance, is a compilation that does not exist in reality (meaning that in normal speech we never recite lists of words), but is a powerful tool for organizing the lexical whole (the polyhedron) within which speech unfolds. The intuitive steps that led to the eventual understanding of the agricultural cycle may be seen as a vernacular tradition: thought came to be articulated along precise “lines” which had to be followed for farming to be successful. When at the turn of the third millennium the Mesopotamian scribes codified in writing the whole process, farming became a “theory” (theoria as the visible embodiment of a sequential argument). The written representation was linear. But — and this is the fundamental point about writing — it allowed non-linear comparisons among segments within the extrasomatic representation of the flow of argument (the written text), comparisons that were not possible within mere speech. Electronic data processing is comparable only to writing in terms of its impact on the human mind. The graphic representation of thought through writing had impacted the very nature of thought by giving it an extrasomatic embodiment which could be observed and manipulated: non-linear jumps could be visually verified, e.g., by comparing cells in a tabular ledger. Computer programming adds a whole new dimension, because it manipulates thought automatically. The myriad logical links effected by a program result instantly, in the output, as single logical jumps. Thus it is that the computer emerges as the perfect tool for non-linear thinking — where “non-linear” means precisely the conflation of multiple strands of linearity, brought together by virtue of the known coherence of the universe within which the segments are organized. The conclusion, then, is that we can make a case for the validity and distinctiveness of the concept of digital nonlinearity. It is valid — even though it properly refers to virtual multi-linearity inscribed within a known coherent whole, which I suggest is properly rendered by the term “polyhedral.” And it is novel — even though the conceptual dimension as such is intrinsic to pre-digital human thought and to its earlier representations. What digitality makes possible is an extraordinary expansion of the potential for mono-segmental “jumps” across vast conceptual landscapes where normal thought processes would require laboriously established polysegmental, overlong paths. Let me review briefly three salient points that help define digital non-linear thought: (1) noncontiguous sequentiality, (2) demonstrability of logical jumps, (3) structured hyperlinking. (1) The nature of sequentiality is essentially different in the two modes of thought. In linear thought, the argument is built on the adjacency of contiguous segments. In non-linear thought, on the other hand, the argument is still sequential, but it jumps across contiguous segments, and it does so because of

the previous knowledge of the whole within which the segments are inscribed (hence the suggested term “polyhedral”). The adjacency of the segments makes it easier to see their reciprocal relationship, but the farther apart the segments are the more significant becomes the realization of their connection. The computer cuts across unlimited adjacencies and proposes unsuspected and innumerable connections, thereby increasing immensely the power of seeing sequentiality where it is not linearly given. (2) Digital non-linearity is not only powerful; it is also demonstrable, on two counts: the universe within which the links take place must be articulated as a coherent whole, and the links themselves are traceable even though one may see only the final output. Take the example of a ceramic assemblage: through a well-developed “grammar” of attributes (typological and stratigraphic), very large quantities of sherds can be brought rapidly within a coherent conceptual construct that matches the material data excavated, and each quantity can be traced back to every single component that goes into making up the total. (3) Concretely, on way in which this can happen, in the specific case of a digital archaeological publication, is through the extensive use of hyperlinks. If a comprehensive “grammar” is in place, one that spells out the properties of the stratigraphic and typological whole (the polyhedron), then automatic tagging can be implemented that will generate unsuspected quantities of hyperlinks (up to a million for an excavation unit of 10 by 20 meters and approximately 3 meters deep). The linkages allow the user to follow inquiry paths that propose themselves as one follows one clue after the next — each remaining in memory so that each segment of the argument can be traced, making the argument properly arguable. So it is that, in the final analysis, a non-linear mode of thought does in fact emerge as valid and distinctive, and that the main use to which it can be put is indeed primarily and exquisitely digital. p Giorgio Buccellati is Professor Emeritus of Near Eastern Languages and Cultures and Director of the Mesopotamian Laboratory.

The archaeology of the Levant in North America
By Aaron A. Burke
The eminent Syro-Palestinian archaeologist, William G. Dever, was by and large correct when he proclaimed the demise of “Biblical Archaeology” more than a decade ago (1995). However, the changes that have occurred over the last three decades within what has been most often identified as SyroPalestinian archaeology cannot be regarded as the “death of a discipline” as Dever suggested. Rather these changes must be recognized as the transformation, if at times painful, of SyroPalestinian archaeology into a truly anthropological discipline

that is grounded in available historical sources, thanks predominantly to the influence of “Biblical Archaeology.” This new discipline, like its siblings Mesopotamian, Anatolian, and Egyptian archaeology, has thus come to be known by the most appropriate geographical designation, the archaeology of the Levant. By definition this region includes not only Israel, Palestine, and Jordan in the south — the region traditionally identified with Syria-Palestine, but also the Egyptian Sinai, and Lebanon, western Syria, and a small part of southern Turkey known as the ‘Amuq Valley and its tributaries in the north — thus, essentially the eastern Mediterranean between Egypt and southern Turkey. Why, though, should the term Levant now be adopted for the archaeology of this region when terms like SyriaPalestine and Canaan have been used so frequently? Although these other terms have been applied to the region, neither is historically or geographically appropriate. Syria-Palestine, on the one hand, is correctly speaking the title of a province under Roman administration of the Levant established by Hadrian in the second century AD (Millar 1993). This term also carries political overtones in the present day that, unfortunately, are overshadowed by efforts to establish a Palestinian state and thus the term has always been misleading to students. On the other hand, the most ancient term, Canaan, is equally inadequate for somewhat different reasons. Despite the fact that Canaan is attested in the Mari texts, from the middle Euphrates, as early as the eighteenth century BC, since it only seems to have referred to a geographic region roughly equivalent to the southern half of the Levant, it does not adequately represent the full geographic extent of the region’s cultures. Neither term, therefore, satisfactorily identifies the region without suggesting a specific historical context. Added to this is the fact that no other ancient geographical terms that are thus far attested, such as Egyptian Djahy or Retenu, are sufficiently geographically identified in order to be adopted. Thus, we are left with the term Levant. The term Levant came into wide currency in English during the sixteenth century to refer to all eastern Mediterranean countries from Turkey to Egypt (see Braudel 1972), though it remains an unknown entity to most people today. Perhaps for this very reason, unfettered by common preconceptions, the term has been used almost exclusively in Near Eastern archaeology to identify the region bounded by the mountains of southern Turkey to the north, the upper Euphrates and the Arabian Desert to the east, the Red Sea to the south, and the Mediterranean Sea and Pelusiac branch of the Nile to the west. While it might be thought of as the leftover strip of land between Egypt, and Mesopotamia and Anatolia, the Levant shares a number of geographic features that facilitated its cultural continuity and thus warrant its identification today by means of a single geographical term. The greatest of these features is the seismically active Great Rift Valley, which bisects the region from north to south, and has always served as an “access corridor” for the movement of man and beast alike, including trade, communication, and invasions. In a
Backdirt: Annual Review


this discernible trend, it remains, therefore, the responsibility of those of us working within this discipline, like myself, to advance this terminology and educate the public regarding its significance. ▲
References Braudel, F. 1972 The Mediterranean and the Mediterranean World in the Age of Philip II. Harper & Row, New York. Dever, W. G. 1995 Death of a Discipline. Biblical Archaeology Review 21(5):50–55, 70. Millar, F. 1993 The Roman Near East, 31 BC–AD 337. Harvard University, Cambridge, MA.

Aaron Burke is an Assistant Professor of Near Eastern Cultures and Languages.

More vital than ever:The future need for archaeology
By Christopher Chippindale
The future begins now, or at most tomorrow. Yesterday, today was tomorrow. The future of archaeology must begin with archaeology now, so I start with a few observations on our cultural state as I see it now, prompted by my having flown from England to Los Angeles to give the seminar from which this essay derives. In the seat pocket on the plane, I was glad to see a favorite and strange publication, the mail-order catalogue, fat and colorful, which United Airlines gives its passengers. The strange thing to me about the Skymall catalogue is its being full of new artifacts which the world has done without happily enough for centuries, but which are now offered as essentials to fulfillment and happiness. There are miniature staircases to help your dog climb on the sofa, and then nylon covers to cope with the dog hairs that fall from the dog; there are sets of miniature landing lights, as if for an airport runway, to put by your house driveway so that Santa Claus can fly in safely on his sled. All these are presented straight-faced as if functionally advantageous — even the landing lights, since who would want Santa to crash into the shrubs? — rather than as whimsy or as contrived distractions for those with more money than things to do. Above all, then, our society is characterized by its multiplying proliferation of artifacts, in number and in range; also by pretence all have an economic and functional rationale. Since archaeology is the study of human societies by its material remains, this gives me great encouragement, even if landing lights for Santa also make my heart sink. At the same time as it is becoming larger and diverse, the range of contemporary culture is shrinking: Santa is part of

similar manner the coastal plain (though extremely narrow in Lebanon) as well as the inland desert provided secondary axes of interconnectivity from north to south. From west to east the Levant consists, therefore, of (1) a humid coastal plain (though of varying widths), (2) an inner mountain ridge, (3) the Great Rift valley, (4) a second mountain or highland ridge, as well as (5) an arid inland plateau. Aspects of the material culture of the Levant exhibit strong stylistic similarities between its various subregions during almost every archaeological period from the Neolithic to the Ottoman period which also justify its identification as a cultural and, thus, archaeological zone. Thus, it is evident that the Levant constitutes a contiguous (though not homogenous) cultural zone akin to Mesopotamia and Egypt, the continuity of which were largely shaped by their principal geographic features. Much sharper breaks are found between the archaeological assemblage of the Levant and those of Anatolia to the north, northwestern Mesopotamia to the east, and, of course, Egypt to the southwest. Because we lack, therefore, a convenient Greek term by which to identify the region — as adopted for Egypt and Mesopotamia, that is also not confused with a modern state with different boundaries (e.g., Syria), we have no recourse but to revive a medieval term, which is largely unknown to the public, to satisfy our requirements. And this, without so much deliberation by scholars, is exactly what has happened over the past 20 years, such that today we can confidently refer to our discipline as the archaeology of the Levant. In light of
Backdirt: Annual Review

this, a particular aspect to a particular festival practiced in a little corner of Europe, now spread uniformly across the globe. I flew to LA in a Boeing jet, a 777: Boeing only builds four models of commercial jet-planes at present; its only competitor, Airbus, also has a tiny model range. Anywhere in the world, when you fly long distance, it will be in one of only a dozen or so models built by one or the other company. So our culture is also characterized by a new and worldwide homogeneity of artifacts, and of cultural forms. A handful of world languages are coming to dominate. A series of specific cultural forms — the nation-state, the centralized government of that nationstate, the joint-stock company, a population concentrated in cities with sprawling suburbs reached by private cars — have become universal. Or, to mention a smaller example: keyboards for writing letters and numbers and the QWERTYUIOP arrangement of letters on it. The story of QWERTY is well known: it was invented in the early days of typewriters when the keys moved sluggishly and could easily entangle, so the layout was devised to make typing slow. Let this be a warning: these dominant cultural and artifactual forms may be effective and fitting and right, but they may also be chance cultural survivals shaped by quite other or contrary conditions. It is when there are no alternatives that one cannot see what the alternatives would be. There are alternatives to QWERTY, like the Dvorak keyboard which is designed to be fast — but it is slow QWERTY which still holds sway. The homogeneity of forms, and the cheapness of communications, have reduced, even abolished distance. If we go to Australia — 15 non-stop hours from LA in, yes, always either a Boeing or an Airbus jet — we will “safely” meet the QWERTY keyboard and can be “safely” on e-mail: my own “home” e-mail address works wherever I am in the world. At the same time, we are alienated from our own natural world. How many of us know the essentials of last year’s wheat harvest, the gathering of the grain that feeds us: was it early or late? Large or small? Affected by disease or clean? How many of us, insulated by city lights and supermarket supply chains, can say what phase of the moon it is today, or which vegetable this week just came into season? The purpose of anthropology is to report and to understand human cultures other than our own. Historically, that was done by travelling, because other places were different. Now those other places are increasingly the same, we have to travel in time, to see what those other places — and our own place — used to be like. This means depending on other people’s eyes and words, on ethnohistoric records rather than direct historical observation. I have been fortunate to work in Australia with communities whose forebears were hunter-gatherers. Although they enjoy fishing, hunting and bush-tucker, these modern-day Aboriginal Australians are not themselves hunter-gatherers. The anthropology of hunter-gatherers — the life-way followed by all human beings for 99 percent of the time there have been humans on earth — has now to become a secondary study, less studying hunter-gatherers today, more studying records of hunter-gatherers yesterday.

So we have a set of paradoxes: • the world of objects is becoming both more elaborate and more standardized; • the variety of human cultures and their material expressions is drastically reducing; and: • our own direct experience is reduced in range; so: • our capacity to understand past and other worlds may be dwindling; at the same time as: • the need for and benefit from grasping human experience other than our very own remains great. The paradoxes mean, surely, that studies of the past are vitally growing in importance. I am sure of this, whilst I recognize that I can see an arrogant emphasis on the present, and disdain for the idea we can learn from past experience, as distinctive of public affairs in the world today. Also relevant is a long-term shift in the balance between historical studies based on texts, and archaeological studies based on material objects. The archives of many historical texts are effectively static — when did we last have a new fulllength Greek or Roman play? Or a really substantial new text in Anglo-Saxon? Or a big group of unknown Mayan codices? But the archaeology of these cultures continues to find new objects, and to develop new methods to study and extract information from them. See here the impact of the new genetic biology on historical studies, and their renewing old debates about ethnicity, identity and survival. In Britain, and I think in Europe as a whole, interest in and respect for old things continues to grow. A measurable sign of this is the value of ‘listed buildings’ — those recognized by the government agency English Heritage as being of historical importance: there are several hundred thousand of these now, many occupied as family houses. A listed building has to be treated with respect: permission has to be sought, and is rarely granted, to modify it fundamentally; in its maintenance, authentic materials must be used again rather than cheaper and more effective modern alternatives. These obstacles to modern free use were formerly reflected in a listed building being worth perhaps 10 or 15 percent less than a similar building unlisted. Now the pattern is reversed: a listed building is worth more in recognition of its officially validated historical importance, despite the restrictions. Searching myself recently for a house to buy in Cambridge, England, I was amused to see the realtors present houses of no special age by English standards, of no special merit architecturally, or with small original features mostly lost or clumsily chopped about, as full of period charm — and at prices upped to reflect their good history. Another aspect of this care for the past is the astonishing success of historical and archaeological programs on British television. The most successful is Time Team, in which a team of archaeologists over a single weekend explores, excavates and makes sense of an archaeological site or special place. It is a cunning formula, with the important advantage that it requires
Backdirt: Annual Review


paying a film crew only for a few days. Sometimes, not much — or not much that can be presented as special and exciting — is found, however good the advance reconnoiter and planning. Intriguingly, it is not central to the success of the program just what — or even if anything — is discovered. Time Team is less about what archaeologists have discovered, than about how they discover it. In short, it is about method, and indeed about the central conundrum in historical studies: we study the past because it is different, yet because it is different it is hard or even impossible to grasp. As explored earlier in this essay, our modern world is fast becoming so singular and so removed from the life experiences of European people even in the sixteenth or seventeenth or nineteenth centuries — still less the people of remote prehistory — that the past is fast receding from us. How can I, who have never been really hungry, know what hunger was like? How can I, living in a rich European country, know the insecurity of harvest in Neolithic times? How can I, insulated from pain by medical technology, know the suffering attested by so many skeletons from archaeological deposits with their evidence of excruciating hurt for years and decades? At the time when the need is greatest for the wisdom of the past, for an understanding of the past mediated through modern science of the kind archaeology offers, perhaps our capacity to know it has slipped away. Perhaps our attitude, our wish to know and learn from the past, has also slipped away. Recent world events seem to me to be directed by leaders startlingly unaware of the close historical precedents for our condition today. I don’t know which way it will go. As anthropology’s access shrinks to societies in the present which are decidedly different and sufficiently “other”, as historical records are necessarily confided to what was recorded at the time by the people of the time, so archaeology’s value is in its access to all periods, to material objects which can be studied in our own time and in light of our own concerns; so the value of historical studies grows, and of archaeology’s special place in the range of historical methods. At the same time, our fast-shifting society is now so singular that much of what it does has no counterpart in former times: what previous human society has created a global warming? What previous human society has reacted well or indifferently or badly to a global warming? And the one thing you learn from history, they do say, is that people don’t learn from history. Maybe. Certainly, we don’t seem to be doing enough of that at the present. Meanwhile, I am a working archaeologist and will continue to be one. p Christopher Chippindale, a former Regents’ Lecturer at the Cotsen Institute, is reader in archaeology and a Curator in the Cambridge University Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology.

A geoarchaeological field trip to Cyprus
By Ioanna Kakoulli and Christian Fischer
“Sometimes the sun of midday, at times the handfuls of rain And the beach, full of fragments of ancient sherds…”
— Verses from the poem, Salamis of Cyprus, by George Seferis

On July 24, 2006, we arrived in Cyprus, the island that — since antiquity — has become synonymous with copper and the goddess of love and beauty, Aphrodite. Like the goddess of love who rose from the waves, Cyprus itself emerged from the sea. The geological evolution and the birth of the island was the result of a geotectonic activity spanning over tens of millions of years. It never crosses the minds of the visitors in Cyprus that the forested peaks of the Troodos mountain region are indeed the deepest layers of oceanic crust formed some ninety million years ago in the sea called Tethis. Through the differential uplifting induced by the movements of the Eurasian and African plates, the Troodos massif has emerged to its current impressive height of almost 2,000 m above sea level and displays a full stratigraphy of the oceanic crust normally found in deep sea. We visited Troodos together with Charlie Steinmetz (Director’s Council founding member), Dr. Lorenzo Lazzarini and Dr. George Constantinou (former Director of the Geological Survey Department of Cyprus and expert in Cypriot geology and with an interest and knowledge in Cypriot archaeology). We stopped at the mines of Skouriotissa and Amiantos (Figures 1 and 2), witnesses of ancient activity in the Neolithic and Chalcolithic periods. The Amiantos mine was the primary source of asbestos and the soapstone picrolite (steatite) used during the Neolithic period to make small-size statuettes. Skouriotissa with the toponym Foukasa was also mentioned in Homeric scripts as Voukasa and it was one of the primary sources of copper in the Old World. In Roman times, copper became known as aes Cyprium (aes being the generic Latin term for copper alloys, and Cyprium because so much of it was mined in Cyprus). The continuous extraction of copper from sulfide minerals mainly chalcocite (Cu2S) and bornite (Cu5FeS4) is substantiated by several heaps of metallurgical slag (Figure 3) indicating the extraction of 200,000 tons of copper metal over a period of about 3,000 years. Scientific data indicated that the copper extracted from the sulfide minerals during the Bronze Age period in Cyprus is comparable in quantity to today’s extraction using advanced mining technologies. It is worth mentioning that to produce 1kg of copper from the sulfide minerals it was necessary to burn 300 kg of charcoal. This means that 1,200,000,000 pinewood trees were required. Cyprus was reforested 16 times over the period of 3,000 years to produce the charcoal needed for the copper industry.


Backdirt: Annual Review

Figure 1: Panoramic view of the Skouriotissa mine. Photo by Fischer, 2006.

Besides copper, the Skouriotissa mine is also rich in ochres and umbers (Figure 4); these minerals were used as pigments in many monumental paintings in Cyprus throughout antiquity and throughout the modern times. The characterization of the natural minerals used as pigments in painting during the Byzantine period was the subject of our research project in Cyprus. More specifically, our focus was the preliminary study of the unique mural decoration in the cell of Saint Neofytos in Paphos. For this project, a portable spectrometer with a wide spectral range was used as the primary tool for the non-invasive characterization of pigments (Figure 5). The unusual rock-cut structure of the cell and the exceptional surviving painting of high artistic quality impress

visitors, pilgrims and scholars. The murals decorating the cell were executed in the twelfth century and partly repainted in the sixteenth century and present interesting points of comparison with other contemporary Byzantine paintings in Cyprus and the rest of the Byzantine world. The paintings, which feature a vivid blue color (probably lapis lazuli from Afghanistan that reached Cyprus through Constantinople), depict different saints at the lower registers, while in the upper registers there are scenes of the Passion of Christ, Christ Pantocrator and others. On the north wall of the tomb, Saint Neofytos is depicted as a suppliant prostrate at the feet of the enthroned Christ in the large composition of the Deesis. It is a proskynesis posture well known in the middle Byzantine period (see St. Sophia in

Figure 2: Panoramic view of the Amiantos mine. Photo by Fischer, 2006.

Figure 3: Heaps of metallurgical slag at the Skouriotissa mine resulted from the extraction of copper over the period of 3,000 years.The people (from left): Charlie Steinmetz, Ioanna Kakoulli, Ellen Steinmetz, Lorenzo Lazzarini and George Constantinou. Photo by Fischer, 2006.
Backdirt: Annual Review


Figure 4: Kakoulli and Steinmetz collecting samples of ochres at Skouriotissa. Photo by Fischer, 2006.

Figure 6: Detail of the painted decoration in the cell of Saint Neofytos in Paphos, Cyprus. Photo by Kakoulli, 2006.

Constantinople, mosaic of Leo VI, ninth century). On the ceiling of the Sanctuary there is an impressive painting of the aspirations of the monk: Saint Neofytos is depicted among the archangels Michael and Gabriel who hold him by the shoulders (Figure 6). An inscription explains the picture: “I fervently pray that I may indeed be enrolled among the angels by virtue of my habit.” The geology of Cyprus played an important role in the development of civilization and created significant revenue through trade and exchange. From the Temple of Aphrodite at Palaipaphos to the Roman houses, the medieval military architecture at Saint Ilarion (Figure 7) and the Byzantine churches, a visitor can see the local stone used as the primary building material and many other colored rocks and minerals used as tesserae for mosaics and pigments in paintings. p Ioanna Kakoulli is Assistant Professor of Materials Science and Engineering with a joint appointment in the UCLA/Getty Program in Archaeological and Ethnographic Conservation. Christian Fischer is a Research Associate at the Cotsen Institute.

Figure 5: Fischer in the cell of Saint Neofytos in Paphos acquiring data using non-invasive techniques. Photo by Kakoulli, 2006. 44
Backdirt: Annual Review

Figure 7:The medieval castle of Saint Ilarion, Cyprus. Photo by Fischer, 2006.

What is “historical”archaeology?
By Sarah P. Morris
A welcome topic of discussion in our recent eight-year review of the Archaeology program was the high visibility of historical archaeology in departments of anthropology, and the lack of a specialist dedicated to this field among our current faculty. Merrick Posnansky (Professor Emeritus of History and Anthropology) introduced this field at UCLA and advised students in it, now several students are working on topics involving historical archaeology of the Pacific Coast with Jeanne Arnold (Professor of Anthropology), and Tom Wake (Director of Zooarchaeology Laboratory) often teaches courses on it, but few of us trained as specialists in it. By historical archaeology we usually mean the archaeology of recent or modern periods, especially post-European contact in the Americas and other colonial spheres, and use the term in contrast to the pursuit of prehistory, or cultures prior to European contact in the Americas. But plenty of us entered the discipline of archaeology through the study of Old World texts and history, and still practice the analysis of those texts as an occasional and separate enterprise, especially those of us working in the Mediterranean, the Middle East, and Asia. Thanks to the activity of Jesse Byock (Professor of Germanic Languages) in Viking Iceland and the advent of Pat Geary (Professor of History) from History to our core faculty, the Archaeology Program also supports several students in medieval European archaeology in coordination with literature and history. Specializing in these areas requires extended study of as many as four ancient and modern languages in addition to English, adding to the length of time expected for a degree in Old World archaeology at UCLA. Within these enterprises, two different directions can be tracked: in the Americas, Africa and Australasia, interest in the contact period and in the early history of European colonial settlement has flourished and is often supported locally by national interests in native and colonial pasts. This has enriched the study of history and often added archaeologists and specialists in material culture to departments of history. Meanwhile, in the older disciplines of European and Classical archaeology, one consequence of new archaeology was the distancing of self-styled “new” archaeologists from the “tyranny of the text.” As I discussed in my contribution to the Institute’s first Cotsen Advanced Seminar (published in 2003), this has led (in the United Kingdom) to the explicit pursuit of a “textfree” zone in archaeology, and the disparagement of research based on historical sources as “text-hindered archaeology.” Thus, while the traditional field of text-based history has moved closer to archaeology through an enhanced interest in material culture, anthropological archaeology has distanced itself from culture-historical approaches, at least in its processual

phase (before post-processual archaeology rediscovered history). Ethnohistory, in contrast, flourishes, as a more proximate (if external) narrative source of native experience, and one could argue that anthropological models themselves are as rigid as texts, in expecting certain patterns of power and process to emerge from the material record. Meanwhile, archaeologists continue to avoid research agendas dictated by texts and even pride themselves, e.g., on training as Roman archaeologists without the study of Latin literature (not uncommon in the United Kingdom, which enjoys the luxury of departments of archaeology separate from those in Classical studies). Have we gone too far in our abandonment of written texts, and thrown out the baby with the bathwater? My first excavation experience 30 years ago placed me in a trench in Israel laid precisely to confirm the testimony of Josephus on his fortification of the cities of the Upper Galilee in the so-called Second Revolt against Rome in the second century AD, about as positivist and narrow an intellectual framework as one can imagine (Excavations at Meiron 1971, 1974-1975, Meyers, Meyers and Strange 1981). Yet since the excavation was published, a much richer and more nuanced form of social archaeology has entered interpretation of the site, including my own trenches (E. Meyers, “RomanPeriod Houses from the Galilee: Domestic Architecture and Gendered Spaces,” in Symbiosis, Symbolism and the Power of the Past, 2003, 487-499). Such were the adventures of text over two decades of intellectual ferment in the field of archaeology, leaving Josephus in the dust for the sake of more radical, feminist approaches. In more modest advances, the popular journal Biblical Archaeologist changed its name, and its focus, to Near Eastern Archaeology to reflect intellectual and political changes in the discipline. In reflecting on these changes and their effect on my own research and responsibility for training future archaeologists, I hope that one day we will all treat a text as no more, and no less, than an additional source of evidence. As potentially biased or misleading as a skewed statistical sample, a probability statement (including absolute dates) with a margin of error, or the partisan thrust of a native or colonial informant, nevertheless it is an essential ingredient in the interpretation of the past. How we integrate its testimony into other data for a comprehensive view remains our task as archaeologists. p Sarah Morris is Steinmetz Professor of Classical Archaeology and Material Culture.

Backdirt: Annual Review


Archaeology in a post-Soviet world: Two perspectives from Armenia and Uzbekistan
By Liz Baker Brite and Elizabeth Mullane
In today’s twenty-first century world, “post-” literature, post-modern, post-colonial, post-industrial, has become commonplace in the humanities and social sciences. A growing body of theories and discussions of this age of selfreflexivity have sought to understand and analyze the cultural impact of these eras. One such field is post-Soviet archaeology. Although the areas of the former USSR are slowly becoming more accessible to Western archaeologists, archaeological investigations have a long history beginning in tsarist Russia in the seventeenth century and continuing through the twentieth century, wherein the Communist Party supported the largest centralized network for archaeological research (Trigger 1972: 207-208). The current archaeological work cannot be seen as merely a product of the past 15 years, but must be appreciated as the careful and detailed work of numerous dedicated archaeologists.

Vorotan Project team: Sue Alcock, John Cherry, Elissa Faro and Liz Mullane, right, examining petroglyphs in Ughtasar, Armenia.

Reflections on Uzbekistan — Liz Baker Brite
Our co-director at the site of Kazakhl’i-yatkan, Dr. Vadim Nicholaivich Yagodin, wanders out to site each and every morning at a slow pace, visibly straining, but also very apparently content with the thought of another day in the field. He’s small and slender, his body struggles against the realities of age and cancer, and if you can understand his Russian, you’ll find a man as tough as nails. Dr. Yagodin has had a distinguished career in academia. He studied under the famed Russian archaeologist S.P. Tolstov, has worked as an archaeologist in Uzbekistan for over 40 years, and is currently the director of the Karakalpak Branch of the Institute for History, Archaeology and Ethnography. He has also been a taxi driver, a field hand, and he has run expeditions on less than $500. He is in essence the embodiment of postSoviet archaeology in Uzbekistan — enervated, yet resilient in spite of a tenuous future. Since 1991, Uzbekistan has struggled to survive the economic, social and political segregation caused by their difficult move to independence from the former Soviet Union. In every sector of their lives, the people of Uzbekistan have been cut off from the essential institutions of the productive, wealthy government to which they had previously been accustomed. The archaeologists such as Dr. Yagodin are no exception. Before independence Dr. Yagodin was an integral part of an academic network that spanned most of the Asian continent; today, he and his colleagues are restricted by modern political borders and a failing economy. They find themselves dependent on foreign scholars for such basic materials as field equipment and publications. Such feelings of instability and reorientation seem to
Backdirt: Annual Review

find their way into the archaeological community not only in the form of funding and political ties, but also in the social realization of archaeology on a day-to-day level. For example, language preferences appear to be shifting. In Soviet times, Russian was the lingua franca of academia and distinguished the educated classes, such as the archaeologists, from the local residents. Today, there is greater interest and pride in the use of local languages such as Karakalpak and Turkmen, though the younger generation is equally eager to learn English and German. Russian does not dominate in the way that it used to on the political front or in the daily life of the people. Overall, the view from the outside makes Uzbekistan archaeology seem mostly forgotten and in many ways abandoned by the rest of the world. But the archaeological heritage of the country is also the pride of the nation, and sites such as the Registan in Samarkand are often spoken about with reverence by local people. And this is exactly what makes Uzbekistan such an inspiring, and humbling, place to work — despite all of the problems, the near complete lack of money, resources, equipment, even the ability to participate in international academic dialogue, there remains a sense within the archaeological community that their work has a value that justifies the sacrifices they make. Such proud resilience is inspiring to watch.

Reflections on Armenia — Elizabeth Mullane
My experiences this summer in Armenia are in no way comprehensive. In a few short weeks in the country, however, I was able to begin to feel the distinctly Armenian worldview and appreciate the immense knowledge and respect they have for both their history and their future. I was privileged to work

on the Vorotan Archaeological Project in Sisian, a city of about 18,000 people in the Armenian highlands. Our team was half American and half Armenian and our working language was English. If you were walking though the dig house, however, you would hear Armenian, Russian and even Greek spoken regularly. The multilingualism of my Armenian colleagues hints not only of recent historical events, but also of their efforts to integrate local and foreign teams in order to unearth more of the Armenian past. Modern political boundaries sometimes stifle this passion and frustrate their efforts at integration. Co-director Mkrtich (Mickey) Zardaryan recalls archaeological surveys throughout modern Nakhichevan Autonomous Republic and Nagorno-Karabakh, something that is impossible today as these are highly militarized areas of conflict in the southern Caucasus. Any one of these recent disputes may have convinced archaeologists to leave the field. Yet I know of at least five other concurrent archaeological projects in Armenia and there are doubtless another dozen that I was unable to visit. The spirit of Armenian archaeology is strong and promising young archaeologists are continuing to work through the Institute of Archaeology and Ethnography as they have since 1959. Although there were lean years in the early 1990s, Armenian archaeologists like Mickey Zardaryan followed their passions and continue their work today. And I for one am grateful for their continued hard work and the rich tradition of archaeology that I was able to join. The fates of these two countries and other post-Soviet nations are not something that can be easily quantified or explained by using maps and timelines. Although 1991 was a watershed year and changed the lives of millions worldwide, the peoples of these countries continued their lives and followed their passions. Although post-Soviet may falsely imply a new archaeological practice, here, a post-Soviet perspective is meant to illustrate the continuation of a long and rich archaeological tradition, largely unnoticed by the world archaeological community. p
References: Trigger, B. 1989 A history of archaeological thought. Cambridge. Cambridge University Press, 207-208

Vanessa Muros and student Allison Lewis facing and stabilizing a copper alloy diadem in preparation for block-lifting.

were expanded to include the training of conservation students from the UCLA/Getty Program in Archaeological and Ethnographic Conservation. This summer a student in the conservation program, Allison Lewis, participated in this project as part of the program’s internship requirement. The goal of the internship was to introduce the student to the types of treatments conducted on-site to gain practical experience, as well as to become familiar with the lifting and conservation of material in situ, the long-term storage and preservation of excavated material, and the challenges of working in the field. Joined in the lab by Alma Bardho, an Albanian chemist training to be a conservator, and myself, conservator and Staff Research Associate with the conservation program, the work focused on the examination and treatment of excavated finds from this season, with treatment of some material from previous seasons. In all, the conservation team had the opportunity to work on a wide range of materials that included ceramics, metals (copper alloy and iron), bone, glass paste, stone, and amber. Though we were kept busy examining and treating the numerous small finds, there were opportunities to work on larger and more indepth projects, not only allowing for exposure to a wider range

Liz Baker Brite and Elizabeth Mullane are Anthropology and Archaeology graduate students, respectively.

Conservation in Albania
By Vanessa Muros
The conservation of excavated artifacts and their longterm preservation has been an essential component of the Cotsen Institute’s excavation of the prehistoric tumulus of Lofkënd in southern Albania, and this season the activities

Image of a reconstructed utilitarian vessel.
Backdirt: Annual Review


of activities, but also providing a greater learning opportunity for the students in the lab. One large project completed this summer was the documentation and reconstruction of a large utilitarian vessel — excavated in the 2005 season — that was found with large quantities of bitumen inside of it. The conservators spent many days photographing and documenting the distribution of the bitumen within the vessel, with the help of photographer Anna MacDonald, in order to work out the relationship of the bitumen to the large pot. After it was documented, the vessel was then reconstructed and photographed for further study and publication. Though it is not clear what the vessel was used for, whether just to hold dry lumps of bitumen or to process it, by using both the documentation and the reconstructed vessel, archaeologists may be able to better understand the use and purpose of the vessel. Time was not only spent working in the lab, but the conservators were also able to work on-site to help lift two very fragile objects. Two copper alloy diadems, found in two different burials, were discovered midway through the season. The diadems were in extremely fragmentary condition and required additional support and remedial treatment before they could be removed from the ground. The conservation team worked with the archaeologists to excavate the objects. They then faced and block-lifted the diadems for transport back to the conservation lab. There the conservators were able to complete the excavation of the diadem and removal of the soil in order to begin the delicate and challenging process of cleaning, stabilization and reconstruction. By expanding the conservation activities on excavations to include the training of conservators, the hope is to better equip archaeological conservation students with the skills needed to stabilize and preserve excavated finds, as well as be involved in the long-term storage and care of excavated material and the collaboration with archaeologists and other specialists. The UCLA/Getty Program in Archaeological and Ethnographic Conservation has sent three graduate students for work on different Cotsen Institute projects from Albania to Chile this summer and the program looks forward to more collaboration in the future. p Vanessa Muros is Staff Research Associate at the UCLA/Getty Program in Archaeological and Ethnographic Conservation.

Excavations at the prehistoric burial tumulus of Lofkënd in Albania
By Sarah P. Morris and John K. Papadopoulos
Excavations continued in the summer of 2006 at the prehistoric burial mound of Lofkënd in Albania as a collaboration of the Cotsen Institute of Archaeology at UCLA and the Institute of Archaeology, Academy of Sciences, Tirana, together with the International Center for Albanian Archaeology, co-directed by the Lorenc Bejko, Sarah Morris and John Papadopoulos. At the end of the 2005 campaign, 62 tombs had been cleared, with a further four uncovered, but not excavated. A low-level aerial photograph of the site taken from a paramotor (motored glider) shows the tumulus at the end of the 2005 campaign (Figure 1). By the conclusion of the 2006 season (June 19 – July 28) the total number of tombs discovered in the tumulus stands at 92 (many multiple burials, thus the total number of individuals was considerably more). All of the new burials date to the Early Iron Age (ca. 1100 – 700 BC) and were in the typical flexed position. Although traces of burning were found with several tombs in 2004 and 2005, the first true cremation tombs appeared in 2006. One of the two cremations was deposited beside an inhumation (Figure 2), presumably in an organic container or cloth that had disintegrated. The new burials excavated in 2006 yielded a broad array of finds, primarily pottery, including the characteristic local handmade matt-painted pottery of the Early Iron Age (Figure 3), and items of personal adornment: beads of semi-precious stone, glass compound, and terracotta, as well as many different types of bronze, iron, and bimetallic items of jewelry, including fibulae and dress pins. A pattern seen in earlier seasons was repeated in 2006: the richest burials were consistently those of younger females, several of whom wore bronze diadems around their heads (Figure 4). The most enigmatic tomb was discovered late in the season, comprising a larger and deeper than normal pit with the bones of several individuals, in total disarray, together with animal bones. This combination was found in no other grave and, more importantly, this one tomb was centrally located in the tumulus and appears to have been the first of all the tombs laid out. By the last day of the season, however, both the tomb pit and the human and animal bone extended to greater depth, so the excavation of this central grave will continue in 2007. While we hoped to complete the excavation of the tumulus in 2006, and reached bedrock in over three-quarters of the mound, deposits in the southeast section clearly continue. The rest of the tumulus and the baulks will be excavated in 2007. A project to rebuild the tumulus to its original appearance,

Figure 1: Aerial view of the Lofkënd tumulus at the end of the 2005 season. 48
Backdirt: Annual Review

Figure 2: Inhumation Tomb 79 beside the cremation (at upper left).

Figure 3: Local handmade matt-painted cup/kyathos.

Figure 4: Bronze diadem (SF 349) worn by one of the younger females from Tomb 72.

Figure 5:The 2006 Lofkënd team.

using locally made mud bricks to reconstruct the baulks, was initiated and will be completed in 2007, along with a plan for providing information on the site for visitors. Careful excavation of an undisturbed burial tumulus such as Lofkënd provides much new information on the processes of tumulus formation, as well as the role of such a prominent monument in the constructed landscape. Our excavations have revealed much new data on pre- and protohistoric mortuary customs in Albania. They also allow us to undertake a comparison of burial customs with tumuli and other types of cemetery sites from a broader region, drawing on results from all over Albania, as well as neighboring countries. As in the past, the Lofkënd team was housed at the excavation base on the site of the ancient Greek colony of Apollonia. The 2006 team photograph was taken in the ancient odeon (small indoor theatre) at Apollonia (Figure 5), prior to a celebration accompanied by Albanian music performed by our talented workmen. p Sarah Morris is Steinmetz Professor of Classical Archaeology and Material Culture. John Papadopolous is Professor and Chair of the Classics department and Director of the Classical Laboratory.

Themes from artifact classification: A theoretical and methodological approach
By Dwight Read
My archaeological research over the past two years has focused on writing Artifact Classification: A Theoretical and Methodological Approach. This is a new book that is now “in press” with Left Coast Press. The book is written from the premise that our interest in identifying types lies not in the act of classifying, but in the information provided through the act of classifying. The justification for identifying types and organizing types into a typology lies in whether our types and our typology reasonably reflect the processes that produce the patterning we have identified. Types are real when they are formed in accordance with the patterning found by methods sensitive to the processes that are responsible for the structure we discern in the data we bring forward for study. I developed the book from a course on artifact classification I started teaching several years ago in which I bring together theoretical and methodological issues involved in artifact classification. I begin with an historical overview
Backdirt: Annual Review


of classification, starting with writings on classification by Irving Rouse, James Ford, J. Brew and Alex Krieger, all four of whom helped frame current-day viewpoints by American archaeologists about artifact classification. These authors explicitly viewed classification as having a cultural basis. What has been lacking heretofore are methods to achieve the goals identified for artifact classification; more specifically, what methods will allow us to identify types in the data we bring forward for analysis in a manner consistent with the cultural context in which past artisans produced the material we identify as artifacts. I show that statistical methods for identification of types implemented in the form of “object clustering” based on clustering algorithms or “attribute clustering” based on statistical measures of variable association are not adequate for the task. The “attribute clustering” method also makes the erroneous assumption that statistical measures of association based on frequency counts of artifact attributes are the proper measure for identifying attribute patterning used to define types. Instead, association based on frequency counts measures the propensity for using one or more artifact types in a task or event, not the patterning among attributes that distinguishes a type. To keep clear the difference between types defined on the basis of attribute patterns and the grouping of types based on the analysis of the frequency counts (which reflects frequency of use), I introduce the idea of a usage type, which I define as “a combination of types whose frequency of usage is similar due to each of the types being used as part of the same activity.” The methods I introduce in the book are not complicated and they make it possible to identify and define types consistent with a cultural interpretation of artifact material The methods “work” in the sense of making it possible to discover culturally salient types because they are based on methods formulated in concordance with our understanding of the relationship between the material domain of artifacts and the cultural/ ideational domain underlying the production of artifacts. I illustrate the methods with several data sets — projectile points from southern California, painted pottery from the prehistoric Tewa and Towa of New Mexico (the data are from Dr. Selma Morley’s Ph.D. dissertation), upper Paleolithic endscrapers and pottery from the Late Neolithic site at Niederwil in Switzerland. The analysis of each data set leads to an unambiguous typology with clear, interpretable, and interesting distinctions among the types. The types also lead to new insights about our data. One surprising discovery occurred with the upper Paleolithic endscrapers from the Aurignacian sites of Castanet A and Ferrassie H analyzed by James Sackett (Professor Emeritus of Anthropology) for his Ph.D. dissertation at Harvard University. Although the frequency distributions for the two sites appear to suggest quite different patterns for the endscrapers, in fact the two sites have the same endscraper typology based on usage types derived from the frequency counts for the endscrapers. Intriguingly, the differences in frequencies of endscrapers between the two sites appear to be due to a difference in the proportion of
Backdirt: Annual Review

A Frequency Functional Trait Range of Possible Values C Truncated Trait Range of Possible Values Frequency


Isochrestic Trait

Range of Possible Values D Neutral Trait Range of Possible Values


Figure 1: Expected frequency distribution patterns for functional, isochrestic, truncated and neutral traits.

shallow-ended scrapers that were converted into round-ended scrapers through retouch on the sides of the endscrapers. This is a hypothesis derived from the frequency counts and could be verified through an analysis of lithic reduction sequences for making endscrapers. Here we have an example showing how a good typological analysis can lead to new, and interesting, hypotheses about artifact production and is not simply a dataorganizing device. In the penultimate chapter I elaborate on a statistically defined distinction for the differences among functional, stylistic and neutral attributes that I formulated several years ago, using the distribution pattern for frequency counts. In the book, and based on the distribution pattern for data from projectile points made by the !Kung San, I divide stylistic into two subcategories: truncated and isochrestic (see Figure 1). I then demonstrate that the evolutionary archaeologists have erred when they only consider two kinds of attributes — stylistic and functional — and distinguish between them using the genetic notions of neutral trait = stylistic trait and adaptive trait = functional trait. The argument makes it clear that the process of formulating a typology is a way to construct “a firm basis for additional and more extensive research aimed at understanding and explicating the processes, both diachronic and synchronic, that structured the material remains of past human societies.” p Dwight Read is Professor of Anthropology.

Remembering Clement Meighan
By James Sackett
Institutional memories are brief, regardless of however lasting the effects of those who went before. It is important to be reminded from time to time of the men and women, now gone, who helped create what we enjoy today — what, indeed, would not exist at all had it not been for their efforts. Those


of us who were in at the beginning might agree in putting the name of Clement Meighan at the top of the list. Clem was born in 1925 and raised in various locales in the West, becoming tall, lean, with rugged good looks, and speaking with the suggestion of a Western drawl. In some ways his early life was hard. He grew up in the Great Depression, and then went off to the Pacific War, to be severely wounded before he had reached his twentieth birthday. He was to walk with a marked limp for the remainder of his life. Yet he had a zest for life and learning, and his childhood fascination with science had always been encouraged by his family and the natural surroundings in which he found himself. It is said that he began to read at the age of three, and as a teenage entomologist became the youngest full member of the California Academy of Sciences. Thanks to the GI Bill, he was able to go to UC Berkeley, where his interests gradually focused upon anthropology. He received his B.A. in 1949, followed by his Ph.D. four years later. By then Clem had obtained a position in the rapidly expanding Department of Anthropology at UCLA, where he was to spend his entire academic career. He took his professional duties seriously, serving as chair of the department more than once, holding a variety of offices in the University Academic Senate, and — at one time or another — playing an active role in the direction of nearly every significant anthropological and archaeological society in the country. His contribution to what was to become the Cotsen Institute was enormous. It began in 1955 with his founding the Archaeological Survey, which made UCLA the center for archaeological research in the southern half of California as well as the sponsor of several projects elsewhere in the world. The Survey was to become the material core around which the Institute itself was formed in 1973, while the intellectual core was provided by the synergy of Giorgio Bucellatti (the Institute’s founder and first director) and Clem, who forged between archaeologists in the humanities and anthropology. The cross-disciplinary ecumenicalism we take for granted as part of the fabric of

Institute life today was hard-won, as it ran across the grain of academic habits of thought (as, alas, it still does in most American institutions). But it goes far in accounting for the very special brand of intellectual distinction the Cotsen Institute enjoys today. Clem was also instrumental in the founding of the Interdepartmental Program in Archaeology (which only much later came under the aegis of the Institute itself). The UCLA Rock Art Archive, which also continues to thrive, was his own special creation. Clem’s curriculum vitae would be the envy of any practicing academic. But his major contribution to the archaeological stature of UCLA involved even more the intangible but immediate effects of his compelling personality, the intellectual mastery he carried so lightly, his drive, and his strength of character. He liked teaching and was good at it, and students responded warmly to his genial manner and the generosity with which he gave them his time. He was known to take on an extra course when he felt the archaeological curriculum to be too thin. And he mentored a host of graduate students, a great many of whom went on to pursue successful professional careers. Clem was universally regarded in the profession as a first-rate excavator and delightful field companion. As a result, he occasionally found himself digging in far-off places like Egypt, Chile, and Guam. A landmark event was his contribution to the first year of the excavations of Terqa in Eastern Syria, a site that Marilyn and Giorgio Bucellatti were soon to establish at the forefront of Mesopotamian research. Clem’s expertise, however, lay in Western North America, particularly in California and West Mexico, where he was a reigning authority. No one excavated with more enthusiasm nor more successfully avoided the original sin of archaeologists — dawdling over getting the material analyzed and published. His mindset was not unlike that of the great UC Berkeley anthropologist, Alfred Kroeber, whose erudition was always tempered by a respect for the solidity of empirical fact. Clem usually welcomed, if not without occasional amusement, the theoretical views of
Backdirt: Annual Review


younger colleagues who came to UCLA in the heady early days of the “New Archaeology.” But he himself held that the best way to get at dead people was a straightforward business of looking at their archaeological remains in the light of the life ways and technologies of living ones. This makes a lot of sense when dealing with the culture history of California, whose ethnographic present blends so smoothly with its archaeological past. He authored a host of articles and several books, some of which — like his original investigations into the nature and meaning of aboriginal rock art — broke new ground. His work was solid, substantial, and data-rich, and will undoubtedly have a long shelf life. Yet his professional career was to take a controversial turn. What happened was that, although very much in tune with progressive thought on social issues of the day as they concerned public (and, especially, university) life, Clem believed with equal conviction that political and social agendas had no place in science. This became an unpopular stand once younger generations began arguing that “politically correct” views about living Native Americans should take precedence over the scholarly needs of archaeologists to excavate new data and conserve them for prolonged study. This clash of philosophies did not take place without rancor. Suffice it to say that future scholars, who will judge Clem on his major contributions to knowledge, may find it difficult to understand how some of his contemporaries could have judged him so ungenerously on altogether different grounds. No doubt this hurt. But, happily, Clem was a well-centered man and none of this seemed to have affected his zest for life and archaeology, even though a series of heart operations and the continuing pain of his war wounds increasingly troubled his later years. He was contentedly and soundly grounded in a home he shared with his wife, Joan, and daughter, Maeve, in the rustic setting of Old Topanga several miles north of UCLA. He never lost his delightful sense of humor and of irony, his love of books, and his capacity for intellectual excitement. And despite physical infirmities that would have invalided a lesser man, Clem remained physically vigorous long after his “retirement” to Bend, Oregon, in 1991. Here he worked until the end, which came at the age of 72. He was one of a kind. I am indebted to Jo Anne Van Tilburg, Director of the UCLA Rock Art Archive, who shared many of her reminiscences of Clem with me and who graciously furnished the photo that accompanies this article. p James Sackett is Professor Emeritus of Anthropology and director of the European Laboratory.

Bon appétit: The archaeology of food and cuisine
By Monica L. Smith

Drawing of prepared dishes, Polychrome A bowl from the Maya site of Kaminaljuyu, Guatemala.

The idea of “cuisine” is something that seems very modern to us, conveying a sense of luxury and choice as well as an abundance of food items. But the idea of food preference — a cultural evaluation of what makes a good meal — seems to have been part of the human story for a very long time. One particularly important component of the story of human food use involves the domestication of plants and animals. Our human ancestors were hunter-gatherers for many hundreds of thousands of years, becoming food producers starting only 10,000 – 12,000 years ago. Population growth combined with climate changes that began to restrict areas of high natural abundance provided the incentive to experiment with controlling food sources instead of relying only on wild resources. People in many regions of the world began to cultivate a limited range of high-yielding plants like wheat, corn, rice and potatoes. Most of these domesticates were high in starch and sugar, and could easily be converted into bread and beer. But doing so required a whole suite of preparation apparatus: grinding tools, hearths and stoves, and pots for brewing and boiling. There became a “right” way to cook, prepare, and eat food, including the use of elaborate serving dishes that we can see in the archaeological record. Domesticated animals presented a different kind of challenge. Cows, goats, sheep and pigs are big “meat packages” and in the days before refrigeration the decision to select one from the herd involved numerous calculations of who would share in the meal. Because animals also had good working lives as beasts of burden and as providers of renewable resources such as milk and wool, the decision to slaughter an animal had a number of economic impacts beyond just the feast that solidified social ties. Still, the domestication of plants and animals wasn’t like an on-off switch. Even modern agriculturalists  use wild resources for medicine, flavorings, and as special-purpose foods, and observations of those practices have led archaeologists to consider how domestication was just one component in the development of a diverse food strategy.


Backdirt: Annual Review

Itinerant fish-seller, Orissa State, India. Separation of bone and shell fragments, Kampsville Illinois.

As human societies grew more complex resulting in the architecture, leadership modes, and trade activities that we identify as “civilization,” food continued to be a factor of social and economic integration. Ordinary people used food every day not just as a matter of nutrition but as a measure of choices about time, labor inputs, and identity. As cities developed, most people stopped having direct control over their food supplies and began to rely instead on markets or patrons for getting their daily needs. While quality might vary between wealthier and poorer inhabitants, there was a shared ideal of appropriate food groups, and high-ranking people often coordinated agricultural systems that would produce more of those domesticated plants and animals. Archaeologists who want to look at past foodways can use a variety of techniques. Archaeobotany is the study of seeds and plant remains, and faunal analysis consists of looking at animal bones to see what animals were eaten and how they were prepared. These plant and animal studies can also help archaeologists to evaluate past environments through the study of the weeds and uninvited animals (rodents and birds) that are found along with the ones that humans deliberately chose. Human biologists also can study skeletons and even paleofeces to find out about ancient nutrition and diet choices. Other ways to evaluate ancient cuisine is through the study of food-associated tools, preparation areas and storage facilities, and trash deposits. Studies of modern people through ethnoarchaeology also can show us regionally-specific practices of food preparation that can serve as models for interpreting archaeological remains. Through these analyses we know that ancient people did not eat everything that was edible, but instead exercised choices about what to collect, prepare, and consume. At exceptionally well-preserved sites like Pompeii, archaeologists have discovered that ancient inhabitants could either make food at home or buy food that was already prepared, similar to our choices today about whether to make a meal or get some take-out on the way home. And UCLA graduate Dr. Martin Biskowski has documented that at Aztec sites, tortilla making represented the social acceptance of a food that could be made in advance and reheated instead of having to be made fresh for every meal. This simple shift may

have enabled the subdivision of kitchen labor into other types of domestic cottage industries. Just as is the case today, “cuisine” was not just about the ingredients that were used to make a meal, but the way in which those ingredients were prepared. Most of what we call haute cuisine today is distinguished by the extra time and labor that is required to turn basic foods into dishes with social significance, such as the creation of a soufflé from the humble ingredients of eggs, flour, and milk. Ancient peoples similarly had a sense of cuisine as a marker of special events: the Maya depicted ritual scenes in which corn tamales are associated with deities, and the Romans had elaborate recipes as well as proverbs about food. In ancient India, rice was such an important part of the social sphere that it was celebrated in every kind of written work. Texts that are about ritual, politics, medicine and poetry all include references to rice as a food that was good for both humans and gods. We also have abundant remains of rice in archaeological sites, and traces of irrigation works and dedicatory inscriptions that show how local leaders utilized this shared ideal of food preference as the basis for organizing the labor required for large-scale agriculture. As the ninth-century AD poet Auvaiyar wrote, the relationship between commoners and elites indicated a high level of mutual dependence: When the rice-bunds are high, the irrigation water will rise; When the water rises, the paddy will grow; When the paddy grows, the inhabitants will thrive; When the inhabitants thrive, the kingdom will flourish; When the kingdom flourishes, the king will prosper. (trans. E.E. White 1975:101). Throughout the ancient world, foodways became the basis for cooperation among people of different ethnicities, status and wealth, and a good indicator for archaeologists of how civilization was built upon the implementation of shared ideals across the whole social spectrum. Food continues to be a subject of global concern today, but the archaeological record shows that food has strong cultural roots that have always gone well beyond our basic biological needs. p Monica L. Smith is Associate Professor of Anthropology and Director of the South Asian Laboratory. Two of her recent articles on food are “ The Archaeology of Food Preference” (American Anthropologist 2006) and “How Ancient Agriculturalists Managed Yield Fluctuations through Crop Selection and Reliance on Wild Plants” (Economic Botany 2006).

Backdirt: Annual Review



ew Investigations at an Old City: esearch at Sisupalgarh, India
By M.L. Smith and R.K. Mohanty

By request of the government of India, this article is to be presented to the public in traditional paper publications only and cannot be electronically distributed. For a copy of this article, please contact the authors or pick up a print copy of Backdirt.

Extreme Archaeology: Research in the Tarapacá Valley, Northern Chile
By Ran Boytner, Ioanna Kakoulli and Maria Cecília Lozada


Backdirt: Annual Review

amounts of equipment and supplies and loaded ourselves like pack  animals for the trip down to Chile. Based on our first season at the Tarapacá Valley, we knew how surprising and exciting the archaeology there could be. The valley has one of the few fresh water rivers in the region and cuts across the Atacama Desert — one of the driest in the world. Recent research suggests that rain was last seen about 17 million years ago. Consequently, the water in the river supports an explosion of life, enabling at least 8,000 years of human occupation in the valley. Sites are abundant, preservation is superb and there is not a blade of grass in sight to hide archaeological remains. The total lack of modern communication makes the Tarapacá Valley an archaeological heaven. Extremely pristine, astonishingly well preserved — the valley never fails to surprise and produce unexpected, spectacular discoveries. Extreme archaeology yields extreme finds.



We purchased large

Backdirt: Annual Review


efore getting into details of what we have found during professionals and establish relationships with the finest research this season, it is important to talk about why we wanted institutions. Chilean archaeology is highly sophisticated to go to the valley in the firstplace. Notwithstanding its harsh with substantial private and state support. They have superb conditions, the valley offers many benefits. First, conservation archaeologists working all over the country. Chile is an island of archaeological materials is superb. Second, the area is of stable democracy in a geo-political region that experiences extremely rich in ore minerals. There is a long tradition of extreme shifts in politics. These factors allow us to make strong extraction, smelting and trade of metals between the Atacama connections and set up long-term plans in the valley. And, the Desert (Figure 1) and the centers of Andean civilizations in Chileans are hospitable, wonderful people. the Altiplano, especially So, the second During the Chilean summer, the Tarapacá river the Titicaca Basin. Third, Tarapacá Valley unlike many other valleys Archaeological Project flow rates increased from the melting snow in the season began with great anticipation. We Altiplano. The rushing water damaged portions of were out to assist in an important rescue the river channel. In an area near the modern village excavation and to look for new discoveries. of Huaraciña, the riverbanks collapsed and exposed We split our group of students into four an entire cemetery where mummies were literally major teams. One team was to continue falling off the cliff. surveying. Another participated in the rescue excavations of a cemetery exposed by the rushing river waters. A third team helped Colleen Donley, Anthropology graduate student, in her dissertation research at Tarapacá Viejo, an Inca and early colonial center in the valley. Finally, a fourth team excavated a sample of circular features that dotted


Figure 1: Opaque photo of the Tarapacá Valley (Photo by David Oppenheimer and Deborah Patton).

in Chile and Peru, the population is declining and there is no urban development to threaten the sites. Areas rich in archaeological remains have barely been touched and the migration of the local population to cities ensures access to sites. Finally, Chile is  welcoming to foreign archaeological research. This accesss provides great advantages to our pioneering project by allowing us to interact with top
Backdirt: Annual Review

Figure 2: Virginia Popper, paleoethnobotanist, and a student collecting botanical materials for comparative study collection (Photo by Ran Boytner).

do not have associated ceramics it is difficult to generate site seriation. Typically, these sites are small, circular stone features, identified as proto-chulpas — near surface burials (see below for more details). Based on parallels from the highlands, we speculate that these probably date to the later Formative through the Late Horizon periods (AD 300 – 1500). They seem to cover large areas of the pampa, far away from the river itself. We walked away from the river for extended distances and still found these features on the desert floor. Where do these burial grounds end? Why is the pampa so dense with chulpas? And why is there no order or pattern to the distribution? These are questions we are still struggling to understand. What is clear is that we can expect to document hundreds, if not thousands, of these features. We will patiently continue our work until patterns emerge to provide clues about their function.
Figure 3: Hans Barnard, Research Associate, and a student engaged in survey activity, taking measurements with the Total Station (Photo by Ran Boytner).

the pampa landscape with no apparent order or consistency. n addition to the four teams, we had a paleoethnobotanical research team (Figure 2), a mapRocks and dust rained down ping team using a Total Station (Figure 3) and constantly on the excavators. The a field conservation team (Figure 4). These force of gravity was definitely at teams were seamlessly integrated into all of odds with the forces of science. But our activities. Contributing to the project the extreme difficulty just made were 21 undergraduate students enrolled in everyone more determined. Staff our field school, five graduate students and and students worked long hours at four volunteers to help move our traveling cir- the site, sometimes suspended from cus forward. The principal goal ropes for hours without a break. of the Tarapacá Archaeological Project is the study of the Tarapacá Valley as a microcosmos that represents many southern Andean valleys. We are creating a pilot project that will thoroughly study and provide a reference point for the comparison and interpretation of find- Figure 4: Molly Gleeson, Conservation graduate student, documenting mumings from other sites in the southern Andes. Because the entire mies for deterioration studies (Photo by Ran Boytner). region is vastly understudied, we have only vague ideas about the type of sites and their spatial distribution. So our research hile a portion of our team was surveying, another design calls for a full-coverage survey extending the length of participated in a unique rescue excavation (Figures the river — about 20 km — and covering a three km track on 5-7). During the Chilean summer, the Tarapacá river flow rates either side of the river. increased from the melting snow in the Altiplano. The rushing Our survey during the 2005 season yielded numerous sites water damaged portions of the river channel. In an area near in the pampa. Over 70 sites were identified in four weeks of the modern village of Huaraciña, the riverbanks collapsed work. This year, we were able to record over 100 additional and exposed an entire cemetery where mummies were literally sites (Figure 4). The site density is so high that all of these sites falling off the cliff. were found in less then 7 km2! Since there is still no reliable The concerned inhabitants of the village  called the ceramic sequence for the valley, and since many of the sites Chilean authorities — the Consejo Monumentos Nacionales



Backdirt: Annual Review


— and requested professional help. A team of archaeologists from the Universidad de Chile (UCH) soon arrived. They began a rescue excavation to safely remove as many mummies as they could during a very short field season in March 2006, but there were plenty more mummies still stuck in the vertical surfaces of the exposed cliff and still others projecting up through the debris at the riverbed. We agreed to help UCH in their efforts and dedicated an entire team to the rescue effort at the cemetery. The awkward position of the mummies stuck in the cliff required a vertical excavation. Instead of approaching the burials from the top down — the normal, traditional method

— we had to reach these burials sideways. To allow for safe excavation and documentation of the burials, we had to secure our excavators and students with climbing equipment. The plan was to suspend the excavators from the cliff near the burials and secure them in place using ascending clamps. The cliff composite is extremely loose gravel, made of sand and embedded with both small and large rocks. Such a matrix made us very concerned about rocks falling on excavators’ heads. In order to comply with all safety regulations and to avoid any accidents, no one could work in the vertical cemetery without a hardhat and specific training in how to use the climbing equipment. This was not an easy task.

Figure 5: Students training with rappelling ropes before engaging in the vertical cemetery rescue excavation (Photo by David Oppenheimer and Deborah Patton). 60
Backdirt: Annual Review

Figure 6: Students held by ropes, engage in intensive excavation activities at the vertical cemetery (Photo by David Oppenheimer and Deborah Patton).

Excavators first secured themselves on a vertical surface and slowly started the rescue excavation to reveal the mummies, and photograph and graphically document the burial. It was impossible for excavators to keep any equipment by their side. So all equipment, including buckets, were secured with ropes on the excavators’ bodies. And this was not the only the challenge we faced. Once the mummies were exposed and documented, they had to be secured tightly on a special type of stretcher and brought down carefully (Figure 8). We had to do all of this without losing our mummies, our data and certainly without losing any students or staff!

We developed a system that worked beautifully. The physical anthropologists and students conducting the excavation exposed the mummies and recorded position and objects in as much detail as possible. Then, students and faculty from the UCLA/Getty Program in Archaeological and Ethnographic Conservation were called in and were responsible for final removal, and transferring the mummies to a special storage facility. Rocks and dust rained down constantly on the excavators. The force of gravity was definitely at odds with the forces of science. But the extreme difficulty just made everyone more determined. Staff and students worked long hours at the site,

Figure 7: A mummy projecting from the cliff face at the vertical cemetery, near the modern village of Huaraciña (Photo by David Oppenheimer and Deborah Patton).

Figure 8: Project members removing mummies, using a special stretcher built by the Conservation program faculty and students, away from the cliff of the vertical cemetery (Photo by Ran Boytner).
Backdirt: Annual Review


sometimes suspended from ropes for hours without a break. The dedication and commitment of all those who worked on this phase of the project, and especially the Conservation Program team, is something that makes every project director beam with pride. At the end of the season, eight mummies were moved to safety and we didn’t even have a scratch to report. A job spectacularly done. ll the while, Colleen Donley worked hard at Tarapacá Viejo, opening 2x1 m units to try and learn more about the site (Figure 9). Colleen is particularly interested in metal production at the site and worked jointly with the mapping team — lead by our own Hans Barnard, Research Associate. She was able to map hundreds of samples of metal production

drawings on the desert surface made by re-organizing rocks in curved and linear lines (Figure 11). Some are as long as 100 m. Previously, researchers suggested that these features were piles of rocks made by nomadic camelid caravan herders going up and down the valley and simply marking their presence. Other


Figure 10: Ran Boytner shoots a photo of a circular feature on the pampa (Photo by Karl LaFarve).

researchers suggested that these were rock piles made during the Salitre period — about 100 years ago — when donkey and mule caravans were carrying wood and minerals between the Altiplano mines and coastal ports. We never felt particularly comfortable with these assumptions, especially since many of these features are associated with clusters of broken pottery and both animal and human bone. We suspected that these Figure 9: Colleen Donley, Anthropology graduate student, discusses excavation features are, in actuality, burials. So we asked for a permit to methods with a student at Tarapacá Viejo (Photo by Ran Boytner). excavate a sample of them. This season, we were able to confront this issue and One of the greatest puzzles emerging from discover what the function of these features really was. Our permit allowed us to excavate only a quarter slice the first season was the function of the many stone of each circular feature. During the excavation of the second feature, we hit the jackpot. circular features we found all across the pampa. A complete burial of a small female was discovered very close to the surface. This female was missing debris in minute detail. As the excavations at Tarapacá Viejo will provide the material for Colleen’s dissertation project, we’ll all be waiting to see her complete report in order to learn about her findings. Before she began her excavation, we thought the site would be shallow and was probably occupied during the Inca and early Colonial occupation of the valley. But Colleen’s units went almost one meter deep. In some lower sections she recovered Formative period artifacts dating much earlier than any of us expected. We are all eager to learn more about of Colleen’s findings and to read her doctoral thesis. One of the greatest puzzles emerging from the first season was the function of the many stone circular features we found all across the pampa. These features, made from piles of rocks two to six meters in diameter, were distributed unequally (Figure 10). Many of them are associated with geoglyphs —
Backdirt: Annual Review

Figure 11: Geoglyphs, like this one, dot the surface of the pampa and faces of hills throughout the Tarapacá Valley (Photo by David Oppenheimer and Deborah Patton).

Our work at the Tarapacá Valley is just beginning. We plan to continue research there for many more years and hope to build a research station that will allow for extended periods of research.
a whole leg and palm of one hand. Further, her abdominal section included a huge amount of larva casing. This evidence suggests that this female died someplace else and was carried for at least a few weeks before she was put in the ground at the Tarapacá Valley. In the travels between her death and final burial, she lost a foot and other portions of her body. But why would someone take the time and effort to carry the body to Tarapacá? e  cannot offer a satisfactory explanation yet.  One  hypothesis originally suggested by Mauricio Uribe, a leading Chilean archaeologist from UCH, identifies the site of Casarones, less then two  km  away from the burial, as a regional cult center. If this is true, then we recovered a female, brought from wherever she died, to be buried on sacred ground. While we are not yet convinced that Casarones was a cult center, this hypothesis certainly explains why so many of these burials are found on the pampa surrounding the site and why some of the mummies we have recovered in that area were found in a bundle with a strap-like rope for easy transportation. Our work at the Tarapacá Valley is just beginning. We plan to continue research there for many more years and hope to build a research station that will allow for extended periods of


research. We already began expanding our roster of specialists. This year, Virginia Popper, Director of the Paleoethnobotany Lab, began a paleoethnobotanical research project in the valley. Hans Barnard, Research Associate, is our cartographic specialist and he is creating very detailed maps in both 2-D and 3-D, using the latest ArcGIS software. David Oppenheimer and Deborah Patton came to the field to apply their considerable talent and sophisticated photographic equipment to document our work, producing high definition digital images. We are committed to incorporating conservation at every step of the project. We have partnered with the UCLA/Getty conservation program to ensure that such commitment will be translated from verbal to actual practice in the field and lab. We are also partnering with the Universidad de Chile. And, we are expanding to include zooarchaeologists and geoarchaeologists in forthcoming seasons. Our vision is a truly multi-disciplinary project, regional in scope and international in scale. We have a strong commitment to a field school that seamlessly incorporates research and teaching for future generations of archaeologists. There are very few places like the Atacama Desert that allow such comprehensive preservation of the archaeological record. And, there are very few nations on earth where the hospitality is equal to what we receive in Chile. Finally, we are grateful to everyone at the Cotsen Institute. Without its support the project would not be half the success it already is. p Ran Boytner is International Archaeology Program Coordinator at the Cotsen Institute. Ioanna Kakoulli is Assistant Professor of Materials Science and Engineering with a joint appointment at the UCLA/Getty Program in Archaeological and Ethnographic Conservation. Maria Cecília Lozada is a Research Associate in the Department of Anthropology at the University of Chicago.

Figure 12:The Mobile Excavation Unit (MEU) deployed for the excavation of a circular feature. Note the Rapid Response Tent providing the only shade in the Pampa for many miles around (Photo by Ran Boytner).
Backdirt: Annual Review



Between Heaven and Hell in ncient Urkesh
By Giorgio Buccellati and Marilyn Kelly-Buccellati

see better what we had been staring at, daily, under the glare of the sun. And yet…


t had not occurred to us that a “son et lumière” approach to our excavations might help us

 he 2005 season had uncovered such a monumental structure as to warrant a visit of the Minister of Culture all the way from Damascus, a good nine-hour drive. He was due by late afternoon, but anticipating the inevitable delays of such official visits, we were concerned that he might arrive too late to actually see the main object of his trip. Not quite knowing what to expect, we decided to set up a few halogen lights. At dusk, the electrician’s work finished, the bright beam of the reflectors began to shed a play of light and shadows that grew more dramatic as the sky darkened. And it was not just a matter of aesthetic impact. Structural details stood out more sharply than we had ever noticed before, as if we were re-discovering what we had seen, described and measured inch by inch in the full daylight.


have lit up the sky for some of the Hurrian rituals described in the texts as being performed at night time. Not that seen in the daylight the structure was less spectacular. The full staircase numbers 24 steps, and the trapezoidal shape of the “apron” gives the whole complex an even more imposing appearance. The viewer’s attention is directed vertically towards the higher plane where the Temple stands, as if to enhance the awareness of a presence beckoning from above. And the punctuated horizontal rows, with the double effect of wider and narrower vertical risers, emphasize visually the gradual ascent. Also, the broad stone revetment wall that flanks the staircase and apron, serves as a boundary between the two worlds, as if a barrier that can be crossed only at the marked threshold of the staircase.

Frontal view of revetment wall, with sounding showing the base of the wall. On the right, in the section, regular accumulations of the last two centuries of use of the Temple Terrace. Previous page: Side view of the monumental staircase (looking NE), with the revetment wall on the left.

ould it be that the lighting was, at the same time, pointing to possible new functional interpretations of the monumental structure? There is, clearly, a stairway leading to a temple at the top of a huge terrace. There is what we called an apron flanking it — one larger row of stones for every step of the central staircase. Could it be, then, that this “apron” served to accommodate an audience that might witness the early phase of a ritual, starting in the plaza in front of the staircase and then leading up to the temple above? The thought had occurred to us, but the dramatic artificial light seemed to bolster our suspicion, suggesting that ancient torches might
Backdirt: Annual Review


As exposed so far, the monumental staircase is most likely to be only half of the full structure, which we see reconstructed in the drawing by our architect. It is accessed from a wide plaza and is flanked by a stone wall that frames an artificial hill, leading up to the Temple. The wall itself is some three meters high, and it stands atop an escarpment that rises above the plaza below. The difference in elevation between the level of the Plaza and the floor of the Temple is of some twelve meters — a man-made terrace that rivals the mountains of what is today the Turkish plateau, a suggestive backdrop to the urban landscape of Urkesh today as it undoubtedly was in antiquity.

We could set the date of construction of the wall and of the staircase to the middle of the third millennium. And we could show that the wall remained intact for more than 1,000 years, until the city itself was abandoned with the coming of the Assyrians, about 1350 BC. The remarkable longevity of this complex may be attributed to its great sacrality, which kept it from being damaged throughout its very long history. In fact,

the third millennium, the material deposited on top of it is almost 1,000 years later. The thick and regular accumulations that abut the revetment wall can be explained with reference to the overall depositional history of the site, which we begin to understand in ever greater detail. By the end of the third millennium, urban development stopped in the lower portions of the mound (the Outer City), and the city as a whole retrenched atop the High Mound. Here, only the southwestern portion of the Temple Terrace and central portion of the Plaza remained free of buildings. The buildup at the southern edge of the Plaza had a considerable impact on the overall process of site formation.

A night view of the monumental staircase, looking towards the Temple. Top of page: reconstruction of the plaza, revetment wall, staircase and temple (drawing Paola Pesaresi).

there is no doubt that the beginnings of this sacrality go back to late prehistoric times. This is shown by the sheer height above the original plain level (some 27 meters to the level of the Temple floor), by the evidence of earlier construction phases lurking beneath the staircase, and by the very early ceramics (Late Chalcolithic) found in the fill below the top surface of the terrace. This is clearly one of the best preserved and most monumental sacral complexes of its kind anywhere in third millennium Syro-Mesopotamia. The stratigraphic situation is particularly interesting. While the base of the wall can be dated to the middle of

By blocking the natural drainage from the Temple Terrace to the plain level, a bowl was created that would trap the material being washed down. Obviously, the lower levels of the Plaza were the first to be filled in. This is the material of the early second millennium, which we have not yet reached. Slowly, the sedimentation within the bowl grew to where it was even with the top of the revetment wall. These are the top 2 – 3 m that we have excavated so far, and which can be dated to the middle part of the second millennium. What is remarkable is that, even at this stage, when the templar structure was much less imposing than in earlier centuries, the revetment wall, now
Backdirt: Annual Review


reduced to a progressively smaller lip, was never touched. The sacrality remained even as the architectural dimension became ever less spectacular. An additional piece of evidence that demonstrates the sacrality of the area is that the Plaza remained, throughout the centuries, a privileged space. All indications are that no installation ever took place there — no pits, no bread ovens, no graves, not even working areas with any concentration of objects. It is not a sterile accumulation, because there are plenty of sherds. But it is inert, as we call it, meaning that it consists exclusively of naturally washed down accumulations. Within several hundreds of cubic meters excavated, hardly any objects have been found. A rare example is a clay rendering of a pig or boar snout, significant because we know of the important role that these animals played in Hurrian rituals. We have talked about chronology. We can even talk about onomastics. We feel that we have good reasons to link the construction of an early phase of the Temple to one of the best known Hurrian rulers, Tish-Atal. Calling himself endan of Urkesh (a Hurrian title which translates as “king”), he

recorded, on two beautiful bronze statuettes each representing a lion in a different posture, the building of a Temple to a god whose name is given as Nergal. Through a complex series of inferences, which would be too long to describe here but which we feel are quite compelling, we conclude that (a) the temple built by Tish-atal corresponds to one of the construction phases of the Temple situated at the top of the great Terrace, and that (b) the god to whom the Temple was dedicated was not Nergal, but Kumarbi, the ancestral figure of the Hurrian divine pantheon. This, then, gives a name to both our building and its builder. Conversely, it gives a date to Tish-atal, somewhere in the second half of the third millennium. Both lions were purchased on the antiquities market long before our excavations began — one by the Louvre and the other by the Metropolitan. We illustrate here the one from the Metropolitan, which exhibits a very ambitious aesthetic program by injecting great dynamism in the animal figure — with its paws positioned frontally and its torso twisted to one side. This is a striking stylistic innovation, which we think may in some way speak to a Hurrian artistic tradition. Within the

Upper left: One of the very few objects found in the accumulations abutting the revetment wall: a clay snout of a pig or boar. Middle left: stone statue of a lion from our excavations in the Temple on top of the monumental Terrace. Upper right: bronze lion with dedication of the king Tish-atal of Urkesh for the construction of a temple to the god NERGAL (probably a logogram for the Hurrian father of the gods, Kumarbi).The lion was sold on the antiquities market long before our excavations, and was purchased by the Metropolitan. Opposite page: Architect’s view (Paola Pesaresi) of the monumental urban complex, with the Palace of Tupkish in the foreground, the Plaza and the Temple Terrace. 68 Backdirt: Annual Review

Temple itself we had found, in earlier excavations and next to the altar, the full image of the stone lion, unfortunately severely damaged and not as stylistically ambitious as the Metropolitan lion. But they both share gusto for a three-dimensional realism that may not be accidental. We assume that the stone lion may have been placed on or near the altar itself, whereas the two bronze lions were part of a foundation deposit, which must have been very near the surface of the Tell and thus within easy reach of local people excavating, in the 1940s, for graves used by local villagers. Finding a home for the Metropolitan (and the Louvre) lions was particularly meaningful because of the institutional association that we have developed with the Metropolitan Museum of Art. It has long since been an enlightened policy of the Museum to have members of its personnel join as active members of archaeological expeditions in order to gain firsthand experience of excavation techniques and to learn about the importance of the stratigraphic context for the understanding of any object. For two years now we have had the participation of one of the Assistant Curators in the Department of the Ancient Near East (Jean Evans), and this last year we also benefited from the visit of the Chief Curator, Joan Aruz. One particular contribution that will derive from this collaboration will be their assistance in developing plans for the installations in the newly built Museum in the capital city of our province, Hassaka, where the objects from our excavations will be on display. While we are currently concentrating on the Temple Terrace, we will soon return to the excavation of the Palace as well, because it is part of a single organic whole that stretches for more than 200 m from west to east. What makes the whole complex even more impressive is the coherence of the ambitious urban planning that links harmoniously the secular

and the religious spheres. The Palace itself is slightly later (2250 BC), and we do not know whether or not an earlier one stood in its place. But what is certain is that another very sacral, and equally earlier, structure brackets the Palace to the southwest. It was called abi in the language of Urkesh, Hurrian, and it served as a conduit to the Netherworld, whence the infernal deities were summoned through rituals preserved in later Hurrian texts (preserved in the Hittite archives). The abi is a deep pit, lined with large stones, much like the revetment wall of the Temple Terrace. We have excavated it to a depth of 8 m, and it reaches even further, probably to virgin soil (6 m more). The earliest levels excavated belong to the same time period as the Temple, and, like it, it most likely dates back to late prehistoric times. This double thrust — downwards to the netherworld and upwards to the heavens — defines a very special Hurrian ideological landscape. It is very seldom that we can find such organic monumental wholes in Mesopotamia, so well defined architecturally, so clearly understandable in their function and meaning, so perfectly preserved archaeologically. As we stood looking at the staircase sharply highlighted under the floodlight of the halogen lamps, we could not help but enjoy the subtle metaphor — of us bringing the light of understanding to these mute witnesses of an intensely lived ancient human experience. p Giorgio Buccellati is Professor Emeritus of Near Eastern Languages and Cultures and Director of the Mesopotamian Laboratory. Marilyn Kelly-Buccellati is a Research Associate at the Cotsen Institute.

A Cultural Heritage Center in the Deser t

By Willeke Wendrich


Backdirt: Annual Review

This is where gazelles and ibexes roam, and the hyrax has its den — where the mountains give way to the sea, the windswept coastal plain runs down to the shore lined with rare mangrove trees, which form the breeding ground for many species of birds and fish. This impressive landscape is protected for future generations by the foundation of the Wadi Gemal National Park, one of Egypt’s recently established nature parks.


Photo by Gabriel Mikhael.

he landscape of Egypt’s Eastern Desert is a breathtaking combination of steep mountains and sandy valleys, dotted with occasional groups of acacia trees fed by underground aquafers.

Backdirt: Annual Review


part from birds of prey, rare snakes and lizards, the agitated desert gerboa and an astonishing botanical variety, the Wadi Gemal National Park also has many traces of human activity, both ancient and modern. In the Predynastic period (over 5,000 years ago), people would roam these arid mountains looking for beautiful colored hard stones, from which they made amazingly thin-walled vessels. In the Pharaonic period the Eastern Desert was a source of gold and a route to the Red Sea and beyond. Ships were dismantled in the Nile Valley, carried across the desert on donkey back, and reassembled at the shore. Sailing south on the Red Sea, the ancient Egyptian explorers were looking for the substance that made statues into gods: incense. The Roman period saw largescale exploitation of the mineral wealth of the Eastern Desert. The enormous pillars that front the Pantheon in Rome have been carved in Mons Claudianus, dragged down the mountain, driven on carts over rutted mountain roads to the Nile Valley, shipped down stream to Alexandria, transferred to a sea-going ships and sailed to Rome. The precious Imperial Porphyry, the stone fit for emperors, was quarried just north: at Mons Porphyritus. Further to the south, the only emerald mines in
Backdirt: Annual Review


the Roman Empire were located in a number of valleys known collectively as “Mons Smaragdus.” Apart from that, the Eastern Desert was a thoroughfare for expensive imports from India, South Arabia and the African coastal region. For eight years, between 1994 and 2001, excavations have taken place at the harbor of Berenike, a coral-built town erected where these import goods came onto Egyptian soil and were transferred onto camel caravans. When work was started in Berenike, the co-directors of the project, Steven Sidebotham and myself, decided not to hire well trained archaeological workmen from the Nile Valley (the so-called Qufti’s, based in the village of Quft, first trained by Flinders Petrie and proudly maintaining his tradition), but to work with the local population. Although the region seems to be completely devoid of human presence, a keen observer will see occasional manmade features in the landscape. These are Ababda houses, made of mats and carpets stretched over a frame of branches. In a typical season the Berenike project would hire and train around 80 Ababda, who would travel from far to find employ and, in later years, to be back with the closely-knit group of excavators. They developed a sense of pride in their work and

in the historical monuments that were part of their territory. During work in the trenches we often had discussions about archaeology, about life in Europe and the United States as compared to life in Egypt, and about the many recent changes in the Red Sea region. Hurghada had quickly developed as a tourist center after the military airport had been opened for civilians. The town is especially in demand for beach and dive tourism, and the population of what in the 1980s still had been a small fishing village had exploded. Tourist companies from Cairo, Luxor and Alexandria had swarmed to Hurghada and started businesses, from a stately Sheraton hotel to small souvenir shops. By 1990 so much damage had been done to the reefs by intensive use, and boats indiscriminately throwing out anchors, that more adventurous divers traveled south to Safaga, Quseir and, the Mecca of diving, Mersa Alam, a road crossing with 20 houses, a gas station, two tea shops and a guest house owned by the Egyptian Geological Survey and Mining Authority. During our first excavation year, 1994, we had to make our way south along the Red Sea coast with great care. South of the town of Quseir, Map of the region. Drawing by Hans Barnard. once an active harbor from which pilgrims left for the Hadj, but by the 1990s, a sleepy fishing village, the narrow asphalt road was in such a bad state that on a good day it took eight hours to cover the 320 km (200 mi) to Berenike. his was not so in 1996. The military had put great effort in making the disputed Halaib triangle more easily accessible. From Quseir a smooth two-lane asphalt road snaked along the shore passing Berenike on its route towards the Sudanese border. As a result the trip Quseir-Berenike took no more than three to four hours. With the improved infrastructure followed the tourists and the tourism companies. The area from Ras Benas (just north of Berenike) to the Sudanese border was closed off by the military, but the entire coast between Hurghada and Ras Benas saw an incredibly rapid development. In the confrontation with Egyptians from the Nile Valley, and with government authorities selling off stretches of coastal land for tourism development, the Ababda were quite powerless. Until then the region was regulated by tribal law, which maintained a careful balance of use rights and ownership. Sub-groups of Ababda had the authority over specific regions and their Bottom right: the author teaching Ababda workmen as part of the Eastern Desert Antiquities resources, such as water, wood, and medicinal Protection Project. Opposite page: the ruins of the Sikait emerald mine (Roman period) at Mt. plants (Krzywinski and Pierce 2001). The Smaragdus.
Backdirt: Annual Review



reaction of the Ababda to this incursion differed. Some saw the developments as a chance to get a piece of the tourist pie, while others looked upon the dive tourists and the “desert safaris” with great horror, and proposed to withdraw into the desert, avoiding contact as much as possible. The increase in tourism did cause immediate conflicts. Part of a romantic itinerary of a trip into the desert is to sit around the camp fire. As the tourist companies considered the land uninhabited and not belonging to anyone, hapless guides would take carefully preserved firewood from the lone Acacias. To the Ababda this was an incomprehensible and disturbing act. The management of the trees, all of which belong to certain families, was a matter of careful consideration both of what the tree could

the courtyard. The loss of knowledge of the culture was most evident in a group of young men who were related to the Ababda of the Berenike area, but whose parents had moved to Wadi Khareet, a sprawling settlement in the Nile Valley. Their fathers had given up sheep, goat and camel herding and now worked as agricultural laborers. The 16-year-old sons who had gone to school were used to resources such as a telephone office and government clinic. They were living in houses with electricity and running water (albeit, no sewage). It was this group that was most fascinated by the trappings of traditional Ababda life, and these young men realized how much knowledge of traditional Ababda life they had lost, even though they clearly identified themselves as Ababda.

sustain and who the owner was. The same was true for the few water sources that can be found in the area. In addition, the four-wheel drive vehicles churned up the wadi sands, while the Ababda, who were driving light, aged Toyota HiLux pick up trucks, found it more and more difficult to negotiate the sands and gravels of the desert floor, which beforehand could be done by careful navigation. The discussions in the trenches focused on how life was changing rapidly. Instead of the mat houses, Ababda families increasingly lived in government built concrete dwellings: tworoom houses with a courtyard. In many cases the concrete rooms were used mainly for storage, while the social life centered around the front of a traditional mat house erected in
Backdirt: Annual Review

n 1998, with financial support of the Royal Netherlands Embassy, a collection of Ababda material culture was made. A core group of 15 Ababda, made up of some of the young men from Wadi Khareet in the Nile Valley and members of the ‘Ogada and the Zeidaab, the two tribes living near Berenike, formed the “museum committee.” They determined what objects should be collected and were responsible for assembling information about these objects by talking to other members of the excavation crew. The collection grew steadily and formed the core of three exhibits: one in a small site museum in Berenike, one in a tower of the Ottoman Fort in Quseir, a building that was restored and turned into a visitor’s center in 2000 (and officially opened in 2005) and a third one,


for which the committee chose the highest quality objects, that was to travel to the Netherlands for an exhibit in the World Museum in Rotterdam (April 2002 through March 2003). In December 2001 the excavations at Berenike were cancelled because the military revoked all permits for scientific research in the southern region of Egypt. This change affected Egyptian and foreign geological, ecological and archaeological expeditions. Since then, the site museum has been inaccessible, making it impossible to monitor the condition of the objects, many of which are made of rawhide, acacia-tanned leather and ostrich feathers. The Royal Netherlands Embassy once more came to the rescue and granted financial support to build a new cultural heritage center to display the Ababda

wedding saddle, with a backing of plaited palm leaf, lined with red velvet and decorated with ostrich feathers, kauri shells, glass beads and silver ornaments. At the opening, all Ababda men, women and children from the wide surroundings were invited to Berenike for a feast of mutton, traditional sandbaked bread, cola and chips. The museum was opened by the two sheikhs of the two local tribes. The first group entering the museum was the sheikhs, and their families. One of the older women immediately descended on the saddle, climbed on top of it, took a firm hold and started rocking back and forth in an imitation of a camel’s movement. Holding on to the ornamented backing of the wedding saddle, she exclaimed that she remembered the sound of the saddle on her wedding

Above: view of Beyt Ababda from outside, photo by Gabriel Mikhael. Opposite page: external view of the Sikait ruins.

collection.  The  Nature Conservation Section of the Egyptian Environmental Affairs Agency gave permission  to  build  this Cultural  Heritage  Center within the boundaries of the recently  established  Wadi Gemal National Park. This exciting project aims to define the Ababda culture and to preserve the unique cultural signature of the region of the Southern Eastern Desert. While designing the exhibit, the project group working on the cultural heritage center was well aware of the irony of “freezing” a living culture in a specific point in time. The opening of the Ababda museum in Berenike in 1999 had already demonstrated some of the incongruities of the situation. Perhaps the key piece of the collection is a

day (an ominous creaking). A museum piece in a living, but rapidly changing culture, seems an oxymoron, but has an important evocative function, inducing cultural associations and oral traditions. The designer with whom the UCLA project is working on creating the Beyt Ababda (literally the “Ababda House”), is a brilliant Egyptian architect, Gabriel Michael. His design for the Ababda Cultural Heritage Center reflects the historical continuity of human presence in the desert. The material he chose to build the center is the natural regional bedrock and schist that splits naturally in slabs of about 18 in in width. It is the same rock that the Romans used to build the settlements of the
Backdirt: Annual Review


emerald miners in Mons Smaragdus, approximately 20 km (15 mi) inland from where the Beyt Ababda is built (Foster et al. In Press). Gabriel Michael and his building team have reinvented the Roman building technique to dry stack the stone slabs, and build little timpanes above niches and windows. They are creating buildings that blend into the landscape, because they are made from the landscapes’ own material. The exhibit expresses the central notions of being Ababda: a strong segregation in male and female society, with the women living in remote desert valleys, responsible for herding the sheep, goats and keeping an eye on the free roaming camels. The men are involved in economic activities in the outside world. In the old days this was mostly charcoal burning and collecting medicinal herbs, which then, as now, fetched good prices on the herb and spice markets in Cairo and Aswan. At present the men work as drivers or are employed by contractors. They bring in cash with which those products can be bought, which are essential to Ababda life and cannot be produced or gathered in the desert: flour, coffee, sugar and tobacco. Central to Ababda social interaction is the notion of distance and proximity. Living far apart, the women only get together at special occasions, the cause of which can be either cultural (e.g. wedding) or natural (e.g. rain fall). The effect is that when the Ababda get together they are unhurried and spend time to reacquaint. They make coffee from scratch, by roasting the beans, pounding the beans, boiling the coffee up with ginger, and finally serve the result in tiny cups that are half filled with sugar, the sign of prosperity. Compared to the few possessions an Ababda family owns, the coffee ceremony represents a large percentage of their material belongings. All the trappings for the coffee ceremony are brought out on multiple day hikes: the coffee roaster; the mortar and pestle; the special coffee pot, similar to types that are used throughout East-Sudan, Eritrea and Ethiopia, in its special basket; a second basket protecting six tiny porcelain cups, made in China; green coffee beans, sugar and ginger; a special wooden stand on which to put the coffee cups; a beaded cloth ring in which to rest the globular coffee pot; and circular mats to fan the hot coals of the fire. The exhibit will reflect those aspects which the Ababda themselves have indicated as being central to their identity and their existence (Wendrich, forthcoming). Their living culture will doubtlessly change, and the Beyt Ababda, reflecting the present situation and referencing to that of the last century, will hopefully inspire the Ababda to maintain their strong sense of identity. We, a group of Ababda, several persons involved in the Berenike excavation, and the architect have a vision to expand the Beyt Ababda into a cultural heritage production center, which could include spaces where Ababda women can work on producing the leather tassels and belts that decorate the camels, where they can weave the colorful saddlebags, which could become signature items in the unstoppable development of large hotels along the Red Sea shore. Production of genuine Ababda products could provide a very poor population with a steady stream of revenue, without selling out to large-scale commerce. It may be a way to obtain a piece of the tourist
Backdirt: Annual Review

pie, without being forced to adapt to the worst practice of the foreign tourism industry. s archaeologists we find ourselves drawn into the lives of the people we work with. Spending four months a year for multiple years working in the same region, often with the same people, makes it impossible to remain only interested in the ancient culture of the area. The shy boys that we hired as 16 year olds in 1994 had grown up to become self-assured men in 2001. Ababda men and women have clear opinions on their and our way of life. They will provide unabashed commentaries on what we do and how we do it. In comparison to an inventory of a mat house, even our basic temporary camp was overloaded with tools, devices, instruments, furniture and utensils. Archaeologists, especially those working in isolated areas, pride themselves on being resourceful and well capable of improvisation. Compared to any Ababda, however, we are pitifully dependent on our Leatherman tools, flashlights, shower bags and all our other gadgets. Returning after the excavation season, I would invariably be amazed about how much more stuff I owned back home but had never needed, or even thought about, while in the desert. If anything, the exhibit should express this resourcefulness, the ability to create and thrive with scant materials found in one of the most arid places on earth. p
References: 2007 B. C. Foster, J.-L. G. Rivard, S. E. Sidebotham, H. Cuvigny. Survey of the Emerald Mines at Wadi Sikait 2000/2001 Seasons, In Berenike 19992000, Report on the Excavations in Berenike, Including the Survey at Wadi Kalalat and Siket, and the survey of the Mons Smaragdus Region, edited by S.E. Sidebotham, W.Z. Wendrich, Cotsen Institute of Archaeology, Los Angeles. K. Krzywinski and R.H. Pierce (editors) 2001 Deserting the Desert. A Threatened Cultural Landscape between the Nile and the Sea. Bergen: Alvheim & Eide Akademisk Forlag: pp. 9-60. Wendrich, W. (forthcoming) From Objects to Agents: The Ababda Nomads and the Interpretation of the Past. In H. Barnard, W. Wendrich (editors.), The Archaeology of Mobility. Cotsen Institute of Archaeology, Los Angeles.


Willeke Wendrich is Associate Professor of Egyptian Archaeology.

Celebrating 40 years of contribution and activities
By Marilyn Beaudry-Corbett
he said, ‘Well, let me check this out.’ He went to see his doctor about something and the doctor said, ‘I order you to go on this trip’ and so he ended up being the first president of the FoA.” “Everywhere we went,” continued Elster, “Marija had corresponded with the different curators. They took us down to the storage rooms and we saw so many wonderful objects. We hit all the hot spots. We were on Crete for New Year’s Eve and it was a very jolly event when Marija (a distinguished UCLA professor of Indo-European archaeology) said to everyone, ‘I think we need to have a support group for archaeology at UCLA,’ and everybody asked, ‘how do we do this?’ She said, ‘just call yourselves the Friends of Archaeology and Sandy Elster will be the first president.’” At the event, Julius Bendat, third president of the FoA, mentioned other trips that followed — one with Rainer Berger to Machu Picchu and another with Jo Anne Van Tilburg (Director of the UCLA Rock Art Archive) to Easter Island. David Zuccaro, president in the 1970s, spoke of the Friends’ role in establishing the public lecture series that has become

Ernestine Elster, Research Associate and Director of the Mediterranean Lab, speaks to the crowd at dinner. Photo by Mac Marston.

The year 2006 marks the fortieth anniversary of the founding of the Friends of Archaeology (FoA). To celebrate, the Cotsen Institute held a gala dinner Saturday, June 3, at the Fowler Museum of Cultural History. Over 60 members, faculty, and current graduate students were in attendance. At the event a number of speakers described their involvement with the organization over the years. Ernestine Elster, who has been involved with the Friends of Archaeology since the very beginning, gave some background on the origins of the group, The idea for the organization crystallized during a UCLA Extension trip titled Ancient Worlds Before The Greeks, which took the travelers to Greece, Turkey, Israel and Crete and was led by Professors Marija Gimbutas and Jay Frierman. This voyage concluded an Extension class of the same name. Marija Gimbutas was the co-coordinator along with Jay Frierman. “My husband didn’t want to go, saying it would be just climbing up and down looking at ruins,” said Ernestine. “So I told him, ‘I’ll just have to go without you’ and

Giorgio Buccellati, Professor Emeritus of Near Eastern Languages & Cultures and former Institute Director, addresses the dinner guests on the Terrace. Photo by Mac Marston.

such an integral part of archaeology at UCLA. He reminded the group that Ernestine had been the first to put together a lecture series, recruit speakers, rent a hall on campus, send out publicity, and more. A quote from former Institute of Archaeology Director Giorgio Buccellati’s Forward to the Second Annual Report to the Chancellor and to the Fellows of the Institute, 1974 –1975, reflects the Friends’ status: “As an affiliate group of the Institute, the Friends participate
Backdirt: Annual Review


in all public programs of the Institute and provide support for specific items of concern to archaeology on Campus, most especially in the form of student scholarships.” It should be remembered that the Friends predate the Institute of Archaeology, which was established in the 1973 — 1974 academic year. Or, as David Zuccaro said, “We are the godparents of the Institute.” Dodie Danchek, another member since the 1960s, recalled early FoA symposia that were held at the Recreation Center and at first featured bag lunches. As the Institute’s activities expanded in terms of field and laboratory archaeology so did the Friends’ involvement in the activities. Merrick Posnansky, Director of the Institute from 1985 — 1987 and Professor Emeritus of History and Anthropology, mentioned working to get funding for the Institute to occupy the ground floor of the Fowler Museum, which took place in 1989. He and several other people mentioned how review committees for various academic procedures were always impressed by the level of interest in archaeology in Southern California represented by the varied activities of the Friends and the resulting dominant role of the Institute. The zooarchaeology and archaeobotanical labs provided volunteer opportunities for FoA members. Merrick also mentioned the Friends’ support of graduate students, many of whom have gone on to be distinguished professors at universities in the United States and abroad. Graduate student fellowships from the Friends’ funding were mentioned by a number of speakers, including Susan Downey, Professor of Art History, and Dwight Read, Professor of Anthropology. A newsletter, Backdirt, was started in the 1980s with two FoA volunteer editors, Stephanie Serlin and Peggy Pollinger. UCLA Extension continued offering archaeology classes and many FoA members learned of the organization through that source.

Field trips in the general Southern California area, private lectures in members’ homes, visits to special exhibits at local museums have been and continue to be membership benefits for the group. Several faculty members (Merrick and Sarah Morris, Steinmetz Professor of Classical Archaeology and Material Culture) said that the local field trips not only benefit members, but also new faculty members, as they are often newcomers to the area and are included in such events. The money raised from membership supports both the Cotsen Institute and UCLA graduate students through grants. So, 40 years after its birth on Crete, FoA remains a dynamic presence at the Cotsen Institute, and this year marks the beginning of new membership categories and benefits to ensure the betterment of the Cotsen Institute and its programs, students, and more. p Marilyn Beaudry-Corbett is a Research Associate at the Cotsen Institute. For membership information, please visit friends.php or mail in a membership application request to Friends of Archaeology – Attn. Membership, Cotsen Institute of Archaeology at UCLA, A210 Fowler, Los Angeles, CA 90095-1510


New discoveries in the Cuzco region of Peru
By Brian S. Bauer
there is far more history to the Cuzco region and archaeologists are only now beginning to understand its true depth and complexity. Although the Cuzco region is renowned for being the heartland of the Incas, and archaeological research has been conducted in the region for more than a century, little is known concerning its pre-Inca inhabitants. I began working in the region some 25 years ago, and was quickly trained to believe that the first inhabitants of the Cuzco Valley were farmers who lived in scattered villages along the valley floor. The oldest of these small villages dated to around 1000 BC. I was also told that there were no earlier remains of hunters and gatherers near Cuzco and that if one was interested in looking for evidence of earlier people, they could only be found in the high (+13,000 ft) and remote grass lands far to the south. This area was thought to have the earliest human remains of the region since it still supports large alpaca and llama herds, and various stone tools have been found in the caves of the region. Given this information, I gave little thought to the early hunters and gatherers of the Andes and spent almost a decade researching the development of the Inca Empire. However, the longer I worked in the Cuzco region, the more I saw the rapid urban growth of the city destroying numerous archaeological sites and the more I realized that a survey of the Inca heartland was urgently needed. The goal of such a project would be to locate and map all of the archaeological Book cover of Bauer’s recent Cotsen Institute publication, Kasapata and the Archaic Period of sites of the region before they were lost. I also the Cuzco Valley. understood that, as the center of one of the The Cuzco Valley is world famous for being the heartland Americas’ largest empires, a survey of the Cuzco Valley would of the Incas. Each year hundreds of thousands of people visit be an enormous task that would take many years to complete. the region to see sites such as Machu Picchu and to spend time What I did not realize, was that we would discover sites that in the city of Cuzco itself. Machu Picchu is, in fact, one of the were thousands of years earlier than those already documented world’s best-known archaeological sites and the city of Cuzco, and that we would be able to write an entirely new chapter of the former capital of the Inca Empire, ranks among the most the region’s history. popular tourist destinations in the Americas. However, Machu With funding from a wide range of organizations (including Picchu and most of the visible architecture in Cuzco date the National Science Foundation, National Geographic to relatively recent times. Both were built during the period Society, the National Endowment of the Humanities) as well of Inca expansionism in the Andes (AD 1400 – 1500). Yet, as generous support from my university (The University of
Backdirt: Annual Review


Illinois at Chicago), I began the Cuzco Valley Archaeological Project in 1994 and we completed the survey in 1998. During the course of the project we documented more than 1,600 archaeological sites. As soon as we started the survey, we began to find isolated stone spear tips scattered across the region. As we surveyed more of the region, we found clusters of stone tools and their manufacturing bi-products, which marked the locations of small hunting stations and base camps. These were the first Archaic Period (pre-ceramic) sites to be found in the Cuzco region! By the end of our survey we had identified more than 40 such sites providing an opportunity to examine a previously unknown culture of the region. We believed that these sites would push back the date of the first occupation of the valley from around 1000 BC to as early as 4000 BC. In other words, until our survey was conducted the earliest known settlements in the Cuzco Valley consisted of small agricultural villages. We now, however, had evidence of much older hunting and gathering groups that arrived in the valley thousands of years before the advent of agriculture. To confirm the date of these settlements, we decided to conduct excavations at the site of Kasapata, the largest pre-ceramic site in the region. We were not disappointed. Excavations at the site provided a rich collection of stone tools, human burials, and animal remains as well as other artifacts and materials. A team of outstanding researchers, including Bradford Jones, Cynthia Klink, Richard C. Sutter, Susan D. deFrance, and Richard L. Burger, then studied these remains. Our research at Kasapata indicated that it was occupied as early as 4400 BC and that it continued to be visited for hundreds of years. We uncovered evidence of small structures (almost certainly circular huts supported with wooden poles), an assortment of pits and hearths, as well as many human burials. The site was also rich in artifacts. We recovered numerous stone

tools, worked and un-worked animal bones, and large amounts of carbon. The vast majority of the stone tools were produced from local andesite. However, we know that the people of the site traveled to other regions, since some exotic materials, such as obsidian, are present in the collections. The animal remains included an abundance of the largesized mammals (mostly camelids and deer) as well as small animals, particularly guinea pigs. However we also recovered the remains of fox, dog, and bat as well as medium sized birds. The numerous human burials excavated at the site included those of infants, youths, young adults, and adults. The mortality profile for the human remains and the levels of skeletal infection suggest that the earliest people of the valley suffered from high infant mortality and high rates of infectious diseases. Both skeletal and dental pathologies also suggest that carbohydrates were a significant component of the diet of those interred at Kasapata. Furthermore, we recorded early evidence of cranial deformation at the site. Also noteworthy is the fact that two infants were covered with red and yellow ocher at the time of burial, and another infant was buried with a string of beads. Through our regional survey and our excavations at the site of Kasapata, it is now clear that the Cuzco Valley, like many other regions of the Andes, was inhabited soon after the retreat of the Pleistocene glaciers and that it supported thriving cultures of hunters and gatherers for hundreds of generations before the advent of permanent settlements. p Brian S. Bauer is Professor of Anthropology at the University of Illinois Chicago. His new volume, Kasapata and the Archaic Period of the Cuzco Valley, published by the Publications Unit of the Cotsen Institute of Archaeology, is available for sale. To place an order, visit or contact the Publications Unit at (866) 628-2895 or

The right femur of Burial 10121, exhibiting woven bone and some intermittent sclerotic healing. 80
Backdirt: Annual Review

Agricultural Strategies
Edited by Joyce Marcus and Charles Stanish Cotsen Advanced Seminar 2
ISBN: 978-1-931745-24-6 (cloth) 978-1-931745-22-2 (paper)

Agricultural Strategies brings together a diverse set of new studies — archaeological, ethnohistoric, and ethnographic — that focus on agricultural intensification and hydraulic systems around the world. Fifteen chapters, written by many of the world’s leading experts, combine extensive regional overviews of agricultural histories with in-depth case studies. In this volume are chapters on agriculture in the Middle East, South Asia, Europe, Oceania, Mesoamerica, and South America. A wide range of theoretical perspectives and approaches are used to provide a context for agricultural land-use and water management in a variety of cultural and historical contexts. This book covers the co-evolutionary relationships among sociopolitical structure, agriculture, land-use, and water control. Agricultural Strategies is an invaluable resource for those engaged in ongoing debates about the role of intensification and agriculture in the past and present.

The Early Iron Age Cemetery at Torone
By John K. Papadopoulos Monumenta Archaeologica 24
ISBN: 978-1-931745-16-1

This volume publishes the excavation and analysis of the Early Iron Age cemetery at Torone in Chalkidike, in the north Aegean, Greece. Spanning the period between the twelfth or eleventh century down to ca. 850 BC, the cemetery represents one of the few burial grounds of the period in Greece to have been excavated virtually in its entirety (yielding 134 tombs, of which 118 were cremations and 16 inhumations). In addition to full analyses of the material from individual tombs (pottery, objects of metal, terracotta, stone, bone, glass compound, amber), as well as the burial customs and funerary rites, a series of specialist reports present the physical anthropology of the deceased, as well as the retrieved faunal and floral remains. There is also a petrographic and chemical analysis of the pottery, one of the most comprehensive of its type in Greece. In addition to presenting the archaeological data from the cemetery, this volume seeks to (re)construct a picture of a society in a formative era and for a part of the Greek world that until very recently was archaeologically neglected.

Backdirt: Annual Review


Chinese Society in the Age of Confucius (1000-250 BC): The Archaeological Evidence
By Lothar von Falkenhausen Ideas, Debates and Perspectives 2
ISBN: 978-1-931745-31-4 (cloth) 978-1-931745-30-7 (paper)

The Late Bronze Age (ca. 1000-250 BC) was a crucial period during which the Chinese Classics came into being and famous thinkers such as Confucius (ca. 551-479 BC) laid the intellectual foundations of traditional Chinese civilization. Complementing and often challenging the surviving writings, Lothar von Falkenhausen develops a selfconsciously archaeological perspective on the social conditions in this time. He analyzes clan and lineage organization, social stratification, gender and ethnic differences, as well as social change over time. Falkenhausen not only presents new data, but also thinks about these data in new ways, emphasizing the nexus between the social order and ritual practices and introducing anthropological approaches as-yet rarely tested in China.

Settlement,  Subsistence,  and  Social Complexity: Essays Honoring the Legacy of Jeffrey R. Parsons
Edited by Richard E. Blanton Ideas, Debates and Perspectives 1 ISBN: 978-1-931745-23-4 (cloth)
978-1-931745-20-8 (paper)

This volume brings together the work of some of the most prominent archaeologists to document the impact of Jeffrey R. Parsons on contemporary archaeological method and theory. Parsons is a central figure in the development of settlement pattern archaeology, in which the goal is the study of whole social systems at the scale of regions. In recent decades, regional archaeology has revolutionized how we understand the past, contributing new data and theoretical insights on topics such as early urbanism, social interactions among cities, towns and villages, and long-term population and agricultural change, among many other topics relevant to the study of early civilizations and the evolution of social complexity. Over the past 40 years, the application of these methods by Parsons and others has profoundly changed how we understand the evolution of pre-Hispanic Mesoamerican civilization, and now similar methods are being applied in other world areas. Topics addressed include early urbanism, household and gender, agricultural and craft production, migration, ethnogenesis, the evolution of early chiefdoms, and the emergence of pre-modern world-systems.
Backdirt: Annual Review

Roman Foodprints at Berenike: Archaeobotanical Evidence of Subsistence and Trade in the Eastern Desert of Egypt
By René T.J. Cappers Monograph 55
ISBN: 978-1-931745-27-7 (cloth) 978-1-931745-26-0 (paper)

During the Graeco-Roman period, Berenike served as a gateway to the outside world together with Myos Hormos. Commodities were imported from Africa south of the Sahara, Arabia, and India into the Greek and Roman Empire, the importance of both harbors evidenced by several contemporary sources. Between 1994 and 2002, eight excavation seasons were conducted at Berenike by the University of Delaware and Leiden University, the Netherlands. This book presents the results of the archaeobotanical research of the Roman deposits. It is shown that the study of a transit port such as Berenike, located at the southeastern fringe of the Roman Empire, is highly effective in producing new information on the import of all kinds of luxury items. More than 60 cultivated plant species could be evidenced, several of them for the first time in an archaeobotanical context. The interpretation of the cultivated plants, including the possibilities of cultivation in Berenike proper, is supported by ethnoarchaeobotanical research that has been conducted over the years. The reconstruction of the former environment is based on the many wild plant species that were found in Berenike and the study of the present desert vegetation.

Limited Time Offer...
When you buy a copy of Chinese Society in the Age of Confucius (1000-250 BC): The Archaeological Evidence, by Lothar von Falkenhausen, you will receive a Limited Edition Tote Bag for free. In this volume, von Falkenhausen analyzes clan and lineage organization, social stratification, gender and ethnic differences, as well as social change over time. Complementing and often challenging the surviving writings, von Falkenhausen develops a self-consciously archaeological perspective on the social conditions in this time. $40.00 paper, $70.00 cloth ISBN: 1-931745-30-7 (paper), 1-931745-31-5 (cloth) If you cite this advertisement, you will receive a 10% discount on this volume. For orders, please call (866) 628-2895 or e-mail ioapubs@ucla. edu. For online orders, please visit To see our e-catalog, please visit index.php.
Backdirt: Annual Review



Jeanne E. Arnold
Professor and Vice Chair of Anthropology and Director of the Channel Islands Laboratory
Jeanne Arnold is currently engaged in three main research projects. Her ‘traditional’ fieldwork investigates complex hunter-gatherers on the North American Pacific Coast — on California’s Channel Islands and in the Fraser River Valley of British Columbia — and she is also using ethnoarchaeological techniques to examine modern material culture in contemporary Los Angeles. Her California research focuses on evolving household organization and technologies (including the development of the famed Chumash plank canoe) on the northern Channel Islands and the nature of emergent political leadership in chiefdoms. She recently completed ongoing analyses of the collections from her 2005 excavations in British Columbia at the village site of Ts’qó:ls, an historic-era Salish community in the upper Fraser Valley. An article about the evolving nature of Coast Salish house forms in southern British Columbia is in preparation by the international Fraser Valley Archaeological Project team, of which Arnold has been a codirector. Arnold is also a faculty member of the Department of Anthropology’s Center on Everyday Lives of Families. Based on the large ethnoarchaeological data sets gathered through this multidisciplinary project, she has an article in press about the history of American homes and yards and how modern households are using their spaces and possessions. She has recently published in World Archaeology and Current Anthropology as well as in a book on household archaeology on the Northwest Coast. She is currently preparing articles about the archaeology of leadership in ancient Pacific North America and processes of identity formation in modern U.S. households.

Ongoing work in the Channel Islands region centers on the history of the plank canoe, synthesizing recent research results  and  refuting  notions of a Polynesian source for the Chumash composite canoe.

Giorgio Buccellati
Professor Emeritus of Ancient Near East and of History
Giorgio Buccellati completed his eighteenth season of excavation at Tell Mozan in Syria during the 2005 season. Beginning his excavations in 1984, Buccellati and his wife, Dr. Marilyn Kelly-Buccellati, a professor at California State University, Los Angeles, and Research Associate at the Cotsen Institute of Archaeology, have identified the archaeological site of Tell Mozan as the ancient city of Urkesh, a political and religious hub of the Hurrian people in the third millennium BC. In the 2005 season, their excavations further confirmed this, being concentrated exclusively on the Mittani period Temple Terrace and the Plaza in front of it. Evidence suggests that the Temple was dedicated to Kumarbi, the main ancestral god of the Hurrian pantheon. The Buccellatis chose to concentrate on the Temple due to its monumental size and its implications of Urkesh as a major Hurrian religious center in the third millennium. The 2005 excavations partially uncovered a monumental access staircase and a massive revetment wall surrounding the Terrace. The evidence of the religious importance of the Temple has enabled the Buccellati’s to hypothesize that the two Tish-atal lions, purchased on the antiquities market in 1948 with uncertain provenance, could possibly be part of the foundation deposit of this very temple.

G. Buccellati and M. Kelly-Buccellati 84 Backdirt: Annual Review

Aaron A. Burke
Assistant Professor of Near Eastern Cultures & Languages (Archaeology of the Levant)
Aaron A. Burke joined the faculty of the Department of Near Eastern Languages and Cultures in July 2005. His research interests are centered on the Levant (ancient Israel and neighboring lands). He is co-director of the renewed archaeological expedition to Tel Kabri in northern Israel. He is currently conducting research on the study of the archaeology of warfare as a means of accessing the development of political complexity within Bronze and Iron Age polities in the Levant. As part of this research he has recently completed a comprehensive study of Middle Bronze Age fortification systems, ca. 2000 – 1550 BC, within this region. His continued work on the subject also involves the creation of a Geodatabase for the Archaeology of the Levant that will facilitate analysis of the evolution of Levantine states from the Bronze Age through the Iron Age. He is interested in the archaeology of Israel, the Bronze and Iron Ages in the Levant, the archaeology of warfare and fortification systems, political complexity, Geographic Information System applications in archaeology, and texts and archaeology.

Aaron Burke oversees school children volunteering in Area D-South.

Burke has created a geo-database for the Archaeology of the Levant that will facilitate analysis of the evolution of Levantine states from the Bronze Age through the Iron Age.

Aaron Burke assists Celia Bergoffen with excavation in Area D-South. Carlene Demiany (UCLA ‘06) and two other volunteers prepare Middle Bronze Age palace for final photographs.
Backdirt: Annual Review


Jesse Byock
Professor of Germanic Languages (Old Norse and Medieval Scandinavian) Director of the Mosfell Archaeological Project: A Viking Age Excavation in Iceland Field Season 2005 – 2006
The Mosfell Archaeological Project is an interdisciplinary research project focusing on the Viking Age in Iceland and employing the tools of history, archaeology, anthropology, forensics, environmental sciences, and saga studies. The work constructs a picture of human habitation and environmental change in the region of Mosfell in southwestern Iceland. The Mosfell Valley (Mosfellsdalur), the surrounding highlands, and the lowland coastal areas are a “valley system,” that is, as an interlocking series of natural and man-made pieces, that beginning in the ninth-century Viking Age at the time of the settlement of Iceland (the landnám or landtaking period), developed into a functioning Viking Age, Icelandic community. Focusing on this valley system, our task is to unearth the prehistory and early history of the Mosfell region. We seek the data to provide an in-depth understanding of how this countryside (sveit) evolved from its earliest origins. The Mosfell Archaeological Project has implications for the larger study of the Viking Age and later medieval Iceland, as well as perhaps for the north Atlantic world. Mosfellssveit, which was home to the Mosfell chieftains, encapsulates the major ecologies of Iceland: coastal, riverine, and highland. Culturally, the region is equally representative. In some ways it was a self-contained social and economic unit. In other ways, this early medieval community was connected to the rest of Iceland, not least, through a network of roads, including an east-west route to the nearby meeting of the yearly national assembly, the Althing. With its Viking Age coastal port at Leiruvogur (Clay Bay) at the mouth of the Valley, which was also controlled by the Mosfell chieftains, the region was in commercial and cultural contact with the larger Scandinavian and European worlds, possibly as far east as Constantinople.

Jesse Byock and Phillip Walker discussing with the farmers at Hrísbrú, Ólafur Ingimundarson and his son Andréas, the excavation of the Viking Age longhouse.To the right is the entrance to the valley leading down to the harbor. Directly across the valley is Holy Mountain (Helgafell).

The 2006 Mosfell excavations provided considerable new information about the early occupational history of several sites in the Mosfell Valley. Radiocarbon dates, archaeological, historical, and artifact analyses suggest that the deposits at Hrísbrú on the knoll traditionally called Kirkjuhóll (Church Knoll), date predominantly to the tenth and eleventh centuries, that is, the pagan and early conversion eras of the Viking Age. The archaeological work on Church Knoll in 2005 clarified the architecture of an early timber (stave) church and uncovered the first traces of a wall to the north of the church. This wall gave indications of belonging to the major domestic structure, perhaps a skáli, or Viking Age longhouse. This possibility called for further analysis, and during the 2006 field season we determined that the wall was in fact part of a large Viking Age hall extending for more than 26 meters. This hall or longhouse, which is probably that of the Mosfell chieftains, is in an excellent state of preservation and deserves a full scale excavation next year. During the 2006 field season we also investigated of an arrangement of stones at Borg, further east in the Mosfell Valley, which are man-made and resemble a ship. The excavations at Borg established that the stone setting is of considerable age and also call for future work in the area.
Web sites for the Mosfell Archaeology Project:; 1109876639&archiv e=&start_from=&ucat=1&

The Mosfell team photographing and documenting the walls of the longhouse in the Mosfell Valley. 86
Backdirt: Annual Review

Susan B. Downey
Professor of Art History
My work uncovered parts of a large structure of the Hellenistic period that pre-dates the first temple on the site. This suggests that the temple should be attributed, not to the period of the Greek colony, but rather to the late second century BCE, after the Parthian conquest. Since the attribution of the temple of Artemis to the early days of the colony is also in doubt, as my recent work has shown, we are left with the disconcerting prospect of a Greek colony with no temples. My project is part of a re-evaluation of Hellenistic Dura by the Mission francosyrienne de Doura-Europos, which suggests that, rather than a fully developed colony from the date of its founding in ca. 300 BCE, the early Greek occupants were merely a garrison, and the city as such was laid out in the late second century BCE. This work in turn is part of a major rethinking of the Hellenistic cities of Syria. I have now completed the fieldwork in the Temple of Zeus Megistos, and have written a draft report on the excavations. I hope to return to Syria in the spring to check a few things, if the political situation allows, and revise the manuscript during the spring and summer. A separate, though related project, is a study of the epithets “Greatest” (Megistos) and “Highest” (Hysistos) used to characterize various forms of Zeus in the inscriptions of Greco-Roman Syria that has been published in volume of Parthica dedicated to Gennady Kochalenko. A future project is to rewrite the chapter on the temples of DuraEuropos in Mesopotamian Religious Architecture. This chapter was essentially based on the reports published by the Yale excavators. It has become clear that they did not pay attention to important elements, such as whether walls bond or not, a factor that has major implications for the building history of the temples. The published plans do not always show internal features, such as niches and altars. In some cases it is clear that earlier states of buildings were not noticed. Members of the Mission franco-syrienne de Doura-Europos have undertaken surveys and sondages in some of the temples. Working with them, I expect to be able to trace changes in the buildings and to revise the currently accepted chronology. I also plan to write an article analyzing the drawn restorations of wall paintings in the Temples of Zeus Theos and Adonis at Dura published by Frank Brown. These restorations are vary bold (only the tip of one foot of Zeus Theos remains, yet the whole figure is drawn!) and thus misleading. I want to explore the consequences of such misleading reconstructions for our understanding of the iconography of divinities. Moving beyond Dura, if Iraq should again open up to Western scholars, I would like to turn back to the important Parthian site of Hatra, and pick up again on my earlier work on the sculpture of the city by studying.

Temple of Zeus Megistos at Dura-Europos, Syria

The focus of my research has been the Near East after the Greek conquest under Alexander the Great in the mid-fourth century BCE. I am interested in the interaction of cultures in an area with a highly developed Semitic civilization to which the Greeks came as colonists. In both long established cities of Syria and Mesopotamia, such as Uruk and Babylon, and newly founded Greek cities such as Dura-Europos, Apamaea on the Orontes, and Gerasa, a complex mixture of Greek and Semitic culture developed in such areas as religion, art, and architecture. In my 1988 book, Mesopotamian Religious Architecture: Alexander through the Parthians (Princeton University Press), I documented a dramatic revival of temples in Mesopotamian form and dedicated to traditional Mesopotamian deities in the old cities of the Sumerian heartland after the Greek conquest, probably with the support of the Greek rulers. At the same time, in newly founded cities, such as Ai Khanoum (Afghanistan) and Dura-Europos (Syria), temples were built that showed a creative reworking of Mesopotamian traditions. In Dura, such temples were dedicated to both Greek and Semitic deities. Since 1990, as a member of the Mission franco-syrienne de Doura-Europos, I have been occupied with the re-excavation of the Temple of Zeus Megistos at Dura-Europos. This temple, excavated in 1937 but never published, is one of only two on the site believed by the Yale excavators to go back to the days of the Greek colony, the other being that of Artemis. Most of the field records for this season are lost, but working with plans drawn by the excavator, some sketchy notes he made on the building phases, a manuscript on the first period only, and excellent photographic documentation, I have identified the features he used in his reconstructions of the various phases. By cleaning the building, re-excavating some areas uncovered in 1937, and working in the few areas in and around the building untouched in 1937, I have arrived at a new and dramatically different understanding of the building phases.

Backdirt: Annual Review


Ioanna Kakoulli
Assistant Professor of Materials Science & Engineering and Conservation
coordinated fieldwork and supervised undergraduate and graduate students. Through her studies and training, Kakoulli developed interests in the analytical procedures for microanalysis and non-destructive methods using spectral imaging systems and variable pressure scanning electron microscopy and the advancement of field conservation during excavation and interdisciplinary approaches integrating science, conservation and archaeology. Her current research projects involve studies in field archaeological conservation techniques; the non-invasive and molecular study of mummies from Chile; the spectroscopic study and provenance of pigments from Byzantine rock-painted murals; the development of a protocol for the characterization of organic materials in wall paintings and the study of the technology of Mimbres ceramics. Kakoulli collaborates in academic research projects with distinguished scholars from the US and abroad and she is the author of various scientific articles in archaeological sciences and conservation. Archetype publishers will distribute her book on the characterization and provenance of pigments from Late Classical and Hellenistic paintings in 2007. At present she is working on a second monograph on field archaeological conservation to be published by the Cotsen Institute of Archaeology. She is a co-director of the Tarapacá Archaeological project in Chile and a committee member of the Interdepartmental Program in Archaeology at the Cotsen Institute. She is a reviewer of peer-reviewed articles and of scientific research proposals and member of international professional bodies in conservation and archaeological sciences. Kakoulli’s aims are to further improve the infrastructure for archaeometric research at UCLA and to establish long-term collaborative projects in the US and abroad to promote interdisciplinary approaches to enhance education, multidisciplinary training and scientific research.

Ioanna Kakoulli, right, and Conservation graduate student Liz Werden at the Painted Rock, Santa Barbara, CA.

During 2005 and 2006 Ioanna Kakoulli established the Archaeomaterials Group aiming to establish a dedicated laboratory at UCLA to support research in archaeological and conservation science and forensic analyses of anthropological interest. Kakoulli began her research in archaeological and conservation sciences at the Courtauld Institute of Art, University of London, and she continued her training in advanced analytical techniques applied in the archaeometric field at the University of Oxford. She has acquired further scientific experience through internships and scientific collaborations at the Opificio delle Pietre Dure in Florence, the Scientific Laboratory of the Getty Museum and the National Center for Scientific Research “Demokritos” in Greece. She has participated actively in numerous archaeological excavations and field conservation projects and she has

Cecelia F. Klein
Professor of Art History
This past year Cecelia F. Klein has been working on three projects. The first, an investigation of gender symbolism in the annual preconquest sacrifice of a man impersonating the Aztec god Tezcatlipoca, will be published by the Centre de Renaissance and Reformation Studies at the University of Toronto in a festschrift honoring the historian Richard C. Trexler. To prepare it Klein traveled to Mexico City in January to conduct research in the suburb Iztapalapa, which is near the site where the sacrifice took place. Talks on this work were presented at the University of Arizona and a symposium held at Birkbeck College, University of London. The second research project has concentrated on Aztec ceramic figurines
Backdirt: Annual Review

and their iconographic and chronological relationship to the copal figurines found in offering pits in the foundations of the Aztec Templo Mayor in Mexico City. Research was carried out at the Peabody Museum of Archaeology in Cambridge, Massachusetts, and the American Museum of Natural History in New York City. A talk on the findings was presented last April at the annual meeting of the Society for American Archaeology in San Juan, Puerto Rico, the proceedings of which are being prepared for publication. The article is co-authored by Naoli Victoria Lona.

Richard Lesure
Associate Professor of Anthropology and Chair of the Interdepartmental Archaeology Program and Director of the Mesoamerican Laboratory
on ancient social systems as viewed from within. Formative Mesoamerican sites are rich in small ceramic figurines, effigies, masks, and other such objects. He has considered issues of use and meaning and is now at work on the challenges posed by stylistic variation and change. One of Lesure’s future interests is the study of prehistoric religions. Religion is a richly challenging topic, long a source of both fascination and frustration for archaeologists. Lesure is exploring the theoretical and empirical bases of the narratives of change that archaeologists weave into their accounts of complex societies. One problem is that archaeologists tend to collapse variation among theoretical perspectives with divergences between analytical approaches. That move contributes to a tendency for theory to overpower evidence and leads to circularities in which any finds identified as relevant to “religion” can support a researcher’s initial theoretical claims. Lesure is working on the notion that playing different analytical approaches off each other might help address such circularities, since the approaches constitute artifacts as evidence in different ways.

View from the Tetel site (800-500 BC) towards the La Malinche volcano. Modern city of Apizaco is in the middle ground

Richard Lesure’s interests include ancient belief systems, social relations, and sociopolitical organization, as well as the conceptual framework of archaeology and the history of anthropological thought. Much of his work is inspired by classic problems in the archaeology of complex societies — the origins of sedentism, the roots of social inequality, and the development of urban life. His field research has concerned pre-state (“Formative”) societies of Mesoamerica. He has worked along the Pacific coast of Chiapas and in the highland state of Tlaxcala. An overarching goal of the project in Tlaxcala is an investigation of transformations in social, economic, and symbolic structures during the period 900 BC — AD 100. This span ends during the period of urban coalescence at the ancient city of Teotihuacán, located 80 km from the Tlaxcala study area. A persistent problem in studies of emergent societal complexity is choice of analytical scale. What are appropriate spatial and temporal scales for exploring social processes that led to state formation? Apizaco is useful for exploring the scale of changes in organization and social relations immediately prior to the urban synthesis at Teotihuacán. The inhabitants of Apizaco were just outside centers of political innovation and yet in close contact with those centers. Did Apizaco experience transformations that anticipated the character of urban society? For instance, were shifts toward social stratification and occupational diversification concentrated in major centers or did they extend into rural areas? One of Lesure’s long-standing interests is the analysis of ancient “art.” He is less interested in the elite art of monumental centers than in representational traditions that appear in ordinary domestic settings. His basic claim is that such materials provide an invaluable source of evidence

Lab at Apizaco, Mexico

Formative Mesoamerican sites are rich in small ceramic figurines, effigies, masks, and other such objects.
Backdirt: Annual Review


Sarah P. Morris

Steinmetz Professor of Classical Archaeology and Material Culture
This past spring the Cotsen Institute of Archaeology co-hosted the bi-annual international conference of Aegean prehistorians, who met to discuss the role of Homeric poetry and myth in the history of Aegean archaeology. Sessions were held on campus and at the newly re-opened Getty Villa in Malibu (another co-host of the conference), an opening reception hosted by the Department of Classics followed a reading of Homeric poetry by acclaimed performer and translater Stanley Lombardo, and a final Greek Easter celebration concluded three days of stimulating papers and discussion. The conference was sponsored by the Steinmetz Chair of Classical Archaeology and Material Culture, and included many Cotsen Institute archaeologists and students. The proceedings will be published by the University of Liège in Belgium and appear later this year.

John K. Papadopoulos
Professor and Chair of Classics and Director of the Classical Laboratory
Much of John K. Papadopoulos’ current research is focused on the excavation of the prehistoric burial tumulus of Lofkënd in Albania (see “Excavations at the prehistoric burial tumulus of Lofkënd in Albania” in this issue of Backdirt, page 46). Papadopoulos is also continuing work on the publication of the Early Iron Age in the Athenian Agora and the Molossian cemetery at Liatovouni in Epirus (ca. 1200 – 400 BC). In addition to these field projects, Papadopoulos has been working on the publication of the watercolors of Piet de Jong from the Athenian Agora, as well as those from other sites in Greece, including Knossos, Mycenae, the Palace of Nestor at Pylos, Corinth, and elsewhere. The Archives of the Athenian Agora Excavations of the American School of Classical Studies at Athens contain a remarkable and unique series of watercolors and drawings — well over 400 — by Piet de Jong, one of the best known, most distinctive, and influential archaeological illustrators of the twentieth century. In an era before color photography was available for archaeological illustration, watercolors graced the frontispiece of many archaeological monographs, as they occasionally graced the walls of a museum, providing the reader and visitor with a colorfully cogent view of an object or ancient landscape that somehow surpassed the drabness and stark clarity of black-and-white photography. In addition to frontispieces, many final publications of an archaeological site included various watercolors reproduced in color of the finest and most important discoveries. Through the addition of watercolors, the archaeological monograph was transformed from a scientific account of data and interpretations to a virtual Thucydidean ktema es aiei — a possession or legacy gift for all time. There were many archaeological illustrators who made watercolors of archaeological sites and objects in the Mediterranean, but in Greece the greatest and most prolific of them all was Piet de Jong. During his long career he was actively
Backdirt: Annual Review

sought out by some of the leading archaeologists of the day, both Greek and foreign. And since his death in 1967 the very art of watercolor as a medium for archaeological illustration all but disappeared. Piet de Jong not only lived in the era when the medium of watercolor for archaeological illustration was in demand, he very much defined and perpetuated the medium. His illustrations are works of art of ancient things that we have come to view as works of art. Piet de Jong’s art was the art of antiquity. The publication will coincide with an exhibition organized by the author at the Benaki Museum in Athens.

Reconstruction of the Stoa of Attalos in the Athenian Agora.Watercolor by Piet de Jong.

Ellen Pearlstein
Faculty of UCLA/Getty Program in Archaeological and Ethnographic Conservation
Ellen Pearlstein has continued to research feather fading, including spending time in Vienna to examine eighteenth century Mexican feather mosaics in the collection of the Museum für Volkerkunde. She has also begun the examination and analysis of the Rosebud Winter Count, a Native American pictorial calendar on fabric made by the Lakota-Sioux, and currently in the collection of the National Anthropological Archives in Washington D.C. Ellen participated with Ran Boytner and Ioanna Kakoulli in the Tarapacá Valley summer field season in Chile. In September 2006 she co-instructed, with distinguished colleague Velson Horie, a course she developed for the American Institute for Conservation on adhesives for conservation.

Bishop’s miter, mosaic made from semi-tropical bird feathers, Mexico. Museum für Volkerkunde,Vienna. Shown here is a detail of two Disciples of Christ with foliage and birds. Photo by Ellen Pearlstein.

Merrick Posnansky
Professor Emeritus of History and Anthropology
Merrick Posnansky continued with his research project in Uganda and hopes to be in the field from mid December 2006 until late January 2007. The focus of his research is the 12-acre Egyptian Imperial fort at Dufile on the Upper Nile established by Colonel Charles Gordon in 1874. At its peak the fort housed more than a thousand Egyptian and Nubian troops. The principal objectives of the mission are to map the three different forts at Dufile, search for and evaluate the 1888 battle ground where the Dufile forces repelled the invading Mahdiaya forces that had killed Gordon in Khartoum in 1885, and to locate the African settlement sites of the local African Madi inhabitants and describe the process of acculturation between the Sudanese and the African population. Posnansky visited Uganda in January 2006. He delivered the first E. J. Wayland Memorial lecture to the Uganda Society and obtained assurances of support for his work from local businesses including Shell Uganda who have committed to providing diesel for field vehicles and generators. The U.S. Fulbright Commission has awarded Posnansky a Senior Fulbright Specialist grant to teach archaeology at Makerere University for six weeks prior to fieldwork and to train field volunteers. During the year a garden party was held at the home of Posnansky that, together with a Web page, raised more than $3,600 to pay for Uganda student participation at Dufile. Grants for field research have also been received from the Cotsen Institute of Archaeology (Ahmanson) and the UCLA International Institute Globalization Research Center. A paper describing the theoretical implications of the Dufile research, “Imperial Archaeology -prospects and realties; a case study from the Upper Nile in Uganda,” was delivered at the Society for Africanist Archaeology meeting at Calgary in June 2006. In August 2006, Posnansky was invited to deliver the keynote address on “Appreciating the Global Dimension of Ghana’s Past” at the Ghana Historical Society meeting in the national conference Center in Accra where he received an award for distinguished contributions to Ghana’s History. He also visited Togo at the invitation of the Universite de Lome and was interviewed as part of a film on the Archaeology of the Kingdom of Notse funded by the U.S. government.

Backdirt: Annual Review


James R. Sackett
Professor Emeritus of Anthropology and Director of the European Laboratory
my Cotsen Institute laboratory to study the stone knapping techniques from Solvieux and related archaeological sites. I am also exploring the possibility of renewing excavations at Solvieux on the occupation floors that house the unique Beauronnian industry, which dates to the transition period from Neanderthals to modern Homo sapiens sapiens. My most recent publication on this industry is: “Le Beauronnien de Solvieux: une industrie du Paléolithique supérieur ancien mélanges” (2005). Negotiations are under way to renew excavation of the Beauronnian level. The immediate legal hurdles have been cleared and the landowner’s permission obtained, but major problems remain regarding obtaining an excavation permit, due to the site’s proximity to a new road and the formidable engineering and logistic problems further digging would entail. The second research area concerns the theory and method of investigating style in archaeology, a topic on which I have periodically published for three decades. I have temporarily put aside working on my substantial book on style in order to write an extended essay on the topic for the Journal of Archaeological Method and Theory. This is scheduled to be completed early this fall, and the book itself before I (hopefully) return to France next year.

James Sackett in the European Laboratory.

Now that I am retired and housed in the European Laboratory, its operation and my activities are essentially one and the same and can safely be summarized together. The work involves two long-standing areas of interest. The first is lithic archaeology, centering upon the late Old Stone Age (Upper Paleolithic) of France. Last year I visited the Perigord region of France to give a speech in honor of my late collaborateur, Jean Gaussen, and to help prepare the exhibitions at the Musée National des Eyzies, which will display the collections of stone tools, lamps, and art I excavated at the open-air site of Solvieux. I am continuing in

David A. Scott
Professor of Conservation and Art History
David A. Scott’s current research is very much concerned with shepherding his latest book, Iron and Steel in Art: Corrosion, Colourants, Conservation, through press in the United Kingdom. This publication has about 400 pages and 160 illustrations and logistical issues with the publication are consuming a fair amount of time. Scott is also working with graduate students on the examination of slag samples and ceramics from Chile, helping Carol Schulze, graduate distance-based student, on examination of samples from Puno, Peru, the study of pigmented materials from cartonnage masks and polychrome in the collections of the Petrie Museum, University of London. Future plans involve writing a general introductory book on the nature of metallurgy and its development in the Old and New Worlds.
David A. Scott at the Getty Villa laboratories. 92
Backdirt: Annual Review

Monica L. Smith
Associate Professor of Anthropology and Director of the South Asia Laboratory
In the past year Monica L. Smith’s research has included publications on archaeology, botany, cartography, and anthropology. Much of this research was generated in the context of the South Asia Laboratory in the Cotsen Institute of Archaeology. With her Indian colleague Dr. R.K. Mohanty, Smith is the co-director of a major excavation project at the ancient city of Sisupalgarh in eastern India where they are investigating the way in which cities appeal to ordinary residents. Although there are only a few elites in any given urban area, there are thousands of others who live and work in the challenging and energetic realm of the city. Through excavations of households and geophysical survey of their surrounding neighborhoods, we are providing new data for the development of urbanism in South Asia and new perspectives for comparative evaluation with other ancient cities worldwide.
Monica L. Smith and R.K. Mohanty at the ruins of Sisupalgarh.

Lothar von Falkenhausen
Professor of Art History and Director of the East Asia Laboratory
Lothar von Falkenhausen continues as the American coprincipal investigator of UCLA’s joint archaeological project with Peking University devoted to the study of ancient salt production in the Upper Yangzi River Basin. The first in a series of bilingual reports on the project’s work finally appeared in June 2006. A campaign of survey took place at Pi Xian, near Chengdu (Sichuan Province), in December 2005–January 2006, to ascertain the location of prehistoric and protohistoric settlements and to test the hypothesis that their configurations changed as exploitation of local salt resources became more intensive during the first millennium BC. This initial survey was very successful in developing a new method (devised by Dr. Gwen Bennett, UCLA graduate) by which archaeological remains can be systematically explored even in terrain that is covered by wet-rice fields. Additional survey work is planned for the coming winter season. Von Falkenhausen spent much of the 2005–2006 academic year preparing his new book, Chinese Society in the Age of Confucius, for press; it appeared in November 2006. He also wrote several articles on Chinese bronzes and bronze inscriptions, and he is in the initial stages of research on a new book project concerned with the archaeological evidence for early economic interaction patterns in continental East Asia. He is continuing with this research during the 2006–2007 academic year, during which he will spend four months as a visiting professor at the Chinese University of Hong Kong. Von Falkenhausen’s graduate students’ news is as follows: Minna Haapanen (now Minna Frank) completed her dissertation in archaeology on pottery consumption and feasting at Anyang during the Late Shang dynasty. Ye Wa completed her dissertation in archaeology on the Tang dynasty cemetery at Xingyuan near Luoyang (Henan). Liangren Zhang made significant progress on his dissertation in art history on early socioeconomic configurations in Central Eurasia in their relationships with the exploitation of metal resources. Adam Smith made significant progress on his dissertation in archaeology on the organization and training of scribes at Anyang during the Late Shang dynasty. Both Zhang and Smith will graduate in Spring 2007.

Conference participants listening to an explanation of Celtic salt-miners tombs by Dr. Anton Kern (Natural History Museum,Vienna)
Backdirt: Annual Review



Channel Islands Laboratory
Director: Jeanne E. Arnold (Professor and Vice Chair of Anthropology)

John Dietler and volunteer Mary Banks screening on Useppa Island, Florida. Photo by Sara Dietler.

The research focus of all senior members of the Channel Islands Laboratory is the complex hunter-gatherers of North America, with research ongoing in California, British Columbia and Florida. Five independent field projects have been directed by Jeanne Arnold and four of her doctoral students during 2005 – 2006, not counting ongoing analyses of large collections from previous excavations on the Channel Islands. The latter work includes research on historic Island Chumash village organization, plank canoe technology, bead-making specialists, fishing practices, and trade systems. The new/ongoing field projects include (1) investigations of cultural change and resistance at several late and contact-era villages of the littleknown Emigdiano Chumash in Kern County, California (Julienne Bernard), (2) the development of shell-working specialists and their implications for political evolution among the Calusa of coastal Florida (John Dietler), (3) the household organization of an early historic pithouse village on Greenwood Island in the upper Fraser River Valley, B.C. (Anthony Graesch), (4) the emergence of one of the earliest large villages — Katz — in the Fraser Valley and implications for early political evolution (Mike Lenert), and (5) excavations at a Coast Salish (Sto:lo) historic village in the upper Fraser Valley (Arnold). The lab this year also added a new graduate student (Kelly Fong) and an exciting new research focus on Chinese-American historical archaeology in California. Very large numbers of undergraduate students from UCLA and other universities as well as impressive numbers of volunteers were trained in archaeological methods and contributed labor toward the completion of all of these projects (the total reached 124 persons). Also, ten articles, book chapters, and newsletter stories were published by lab members during this period.
Backdirt: Annual Review

UCLA doctoral student Michael Lenert is assisted by Simon Fraser University students (M. LaSalle and C.Wright) excavating a 2200-year-old pithouse at the Katz Site in the Fraser Valley, British Columbia. Photo by A. Palmer.

A UCLA undergrad (Eva Prieto) helps on Anthony Graesch’s doctoral project by drawing stratigraphic profiles at the village site of Welqamex, southern British Columbia. Photo by A. P. Graesch.

UCLA/Getty Program in Archaeological and Ethnographic Conservation
Chair: David A. Scott (Professor of Conservation and Art History)
The conservation program has one volunteer who came through the Cotsen Institute, David Oppenheim. Oppenheim has been working with Scott undertaking photomicroscopy. In 2006 – 2007, we will take a Fulbright research student from Egypt, who has been assigned to work with Scott on ancient Egyptian polychrome works of art. Our major collaboration is with USC, Department of Archaeology and Religion, particularly with Dr. Lynn Schwartz Dodd (Research Curator of the archaeological collections). We are collaborating on the technical examination of ancient slag and metalworking debris from Turkey and on the examination of individual artifacts within the collections of USC.
Conservation laboratories at the Getty Villa in Malibu.

Paleoethnobotany Laboratory
Director:Virginia Popper (Research Associate)
Staff, students, and volunteers in the Paleoethnobotany Laboratory analyzed assemblages of plant remains from archaeological sites in Arizona, California, Ecuador, Mexico, and Turkey this past year. Virginia Popper joined the Tarapacá, Chile, archaeological project where the dry desert conditions allow for exceptional preservation of plant remains. She will examine environmental change associated with increased agricultural production and mineral exploitation, and the import, via exchange or collection, of plant resources from the coast and the high Andean puna. Graduate student John “Mac” Marston is examining wood use at Gordion, Turkey. Our contract projects included a study of plant use at Metini Village, a Kashaya Pomo site associated with the Russian outpost of Colony Ross, for Dr. Kent G. Lightfoot (University of California, Berkeley), which showed a mix of traditional subsistence activities and agriculture in the 1830s and 1840s. Students in the Paleoethnobotany Lab class analyzed samples collected by archaeology graduate student Julienne Bernard from Tashlipunin, Kern County, which also looks at the adoption of introduced subsistence practices by native Californians. Samples excavated by Richard Lesure (Associate Professor of Anthropology and Chair of the Cotsen Institute Archaeology Program) from Tlaxcala, Mexico, provided information on Formative maize and non-domesticated plants, while samples excavated by Dr. Sam Connell (Foothill College) provided information on pre-Inka and Inka Period plant use in the high paramo around Pambamarca, Ecuador. UCLA undergraduates Deanna Flegal and Yelena Kravtsova, and three Friends of Archaeology volunteers (Hank Borenstein, Carolyn Perry, and Shigeko Tashiki) provided assistance with this research. Several faculty, students, and research associates consulted the lab for assistance with the identification of botanical remains and advice on sampling, flotation, and identification procedures.

Preserved archaeological corn cobs and other plant remains from the Tarapacá Valley, Chile (photo by David Oppenheimer and Deborah Patton).
Backdirt: Annual Review


Rock Art Archive
Director: Jo Anne Van Tilburg (Research Associate)
descriptions of each item into a database designed by computer analyst Gordon Hull. Keyword searches now allow researchers to access all data. Following final editing, the Heizer Collection will be on-line ready. Field research at Little Lake, in the Owens Valley, has a long history at UCLA. It continues in 2006 with a volunteer team including Van Tilburg, Gordon Hull, and John C. Bretney with Hal Adelson, Doug Brotherton, Wendy All, Tony Hull, Audrey Kopp, Rebekah Reed, Noel Van Slyke, and many others. Pigments collected at Little Lake with the aid of Özge Gençay Üstün (conservation graduate student) are being analyzed by Clarus Backes and compared to samples collected by archaeologist Mark Harrington at Little Lake from 1948 – 1950. A museum studies project, launched last year with Owens Valley basketry expert Judith Finger, has inventoried 205 carefully selected baskets in five major museums. Comparative iconographic analyses between rock art paintings and basketry designs may suggest links to ethnographic identity. Students working in the Archive recently traveled to farflung sites. Henry Debey joined Van Tilburg, Alice Hom, Matthew Bates, and Cristián Arévalo Pakarati on the Easter Island Statue Project team. Working as digital photographer and image catalog editor, he lent a hand on the final phase of the GPS mapping of Rano Raraku quarry. Jaine Sanchez journeyed to Peru to become the fifth Archive student to work there with Carol Mackey.

Van Tilburg and the Rock Art Archive volunteer team, Little Lake.

Rock Art Archive collections, like rock art researchers, are wide-ranging. At the end of 2005, the estimated inventory of Archive holdings included over 300,000 images in 15 named collections; more than 10,000 images enfolded in 6,000 unpublished documents describing or analyzing 233 California rock art sites, and a specialized rock art library of 500 volumes. Ordering and digitizing these extensive but often disorderly files takes a team of dedicated volunteers. Thanks to the indefatigable effort of Sonia Gottesman (Friends of Archaeology volunteer), the rock art papers of preeminent University of California, Berkeley archaeologist Robert Fleming Heizer (1915 – 1979), received in 1979 from Mrs. Heizer (via Archive co-founder C.W. Clewlow, Jr.), are now filed in 35 archivalsafe albums. Three large boxes of Heizer negatives were also scanned and filed by Ed Schoch. Concurrently, Sonia entered

Long-time volunteer Sonia Gottesman and Katie Mead, undergraduate volunteer, at work in the Rock Art Archive. 96 Backdirt: Annual Review

Pecked and scratched designs at Locus 7, Little Lake.

South Asian Laboratory
Director: Monica L. Smith (Associate Professor of Anthropology)
The laboratory of South Asian Archaeology at the Cotsen Institute of Archaeology is a research and working space that features materials from the ongoing archaeological research project led by Monica L. Smith at the site of Sisupalgarh, India. The lab also houses materials (data, publications, images, maps, and more) in active use from Smith’s other research projects, including excavations at Bhasu Vihara, Bangladesh, and systematic surveys in Bangladesh and in India. The lab also provides research space for Smith’s graduate students, Liz Baker Brite and Elizabeth Mullane, and for scholars and visitors from South Asia.

Zooarchaeology Laboratory
Director: Thomas A. Wake (Research Staff)
The Zooarchaeology Lab (“Bone Lab”) remains a beehive of activity. Several interesting projects are either under way or pending, ranging from Peru to California, from 25kya to the Historic Period. The lab is involved in six NSF-funded archaeology projects at various stages of analysis. These projects include: the Chantuto Archaeological Project (Pacific Chiapas, Mexico), directed by Barbara Voorhies (UCSB), the Guerrero Coastal Formative Project (Mexico), directed by Doug Kennett (UO), the Ellis Landing Shellmound Project (San Francisco Bay), directed by Kent Lightfoot (UCB), the Tumbes Archaeological Project (far northern Peru), directed by Jerry Moore (CSUDH), the La Blanca Archaeological Project (Pacific Guatemala), directed by Mike Love (CSUN), and the San Joaquin Archaeological Project (CA), directed by UCLA anthropology graduate student Julie Bernard. The lab is also analyzing several California faunal collections, including a collection of Late Prehistoric Period faunal remains recovered by UCLA alumnus Bill Sapp in the San Bernardino National Forest. Two Late Pleistocene southern California herpetofaunas are undergoing analysis as well, one from Huntington Beach and the other from the west Chino Hills. Together, these fossil faunas have produced the first known Pleistocene records for three different salamander species. Midden samples including both vertebrate and invertebrate faunal remains from Sitio Drago, Panama are also undergoing analysis in the Bone Lab. Human remains recovered from a multiple interment cist tomb at Sitio Drago are undergoing analysis as well. The tomb produced a wealth of shell beads and artifacts (figure 1, 2). Jerry Howard, awarded an Undergraduate Research Scholars Program Scholarship by The Wasserman Foundation, is conducting analysis of Historic Period artifacts from Sitio Drago, primarily ceramics, in the little remaining lab space available. As always, various modern skeletal specimens continue to be added to the lab’s comparative collection. None of the work conducted in the Bone Lab would be possible without the dedicated volunteers who populate it: Sally Donohue, Mercedes Duque, Lady Harrington, Marillyn Holmes, Judy Porcasi, Elsie Sandefur, and Sue Verity.

Figure 1: Carved Spondylus shell artiifacts from Sitio Drago, Panama

Figure 2: Mother of Pearl artifacts from burial 2, Sitio Drago, Panama
Backdirt: Annual Review


Recent faculty publications
Arnold, Jeanne, and Julienne Bernard
2005 Negotiating the Coasts: Status and the Evolution of Boat Technology in California. World Archaeology 37: 109-131.

Batiuk, Stephen and Aaron A. Burke
2005 The Tell Atchana Mapping and GIS Project. In The Amuq Valley Regional Projects, Volume 1: Surveys in the Plain of Antioch and Orontes Delta, Turkey, 1995–2002, edited by K. A. Yener, pp. 145–152. Oriental Institute Publications 131. Oriental Institute of the University of Chicago, Chicago. The Tongan Kinship Terminology: Insights from an Algebraic Analysis. MACT 2. URL: http://www. The Archaeology of the Levant in North America: The Transformation of Biblical and Syro-Palestinian Archaeology. In The New Biblical Archaeology: From Text to Turf, edited by T. E. Levy. Equinox, London. More Light on Old Reliefs: New Kingdom Egyptian Siege Tactics and Asiatic Resistance. In Festschrift in Honor of Lawrence E. Stager, edited by J. D. Schloen. Eisenbrauns, Winona Lake, IN. Tarshish in the Mountains of Lebanon: Attestations of the Biblical Place Name. Maarav. Magdalūma, Migdālîm, Magdoloi, and Majādīl: The Historical Geography and Archaeology of the Magdalu (Migdāl). Bulletin of the American Schools of Oriental Research. Walled Up to Heaven: The Evolution of Middle Bronze Age Fortification Strategies in the Levant. Studies in the Archaeology and History of the Levant, volume 4. Eisenbrauns, Winona lake, IN. In press.

Arnold, Jeanne 2006 Comment on Constraints on the Development of Enduring Inequalities in Late Holocene Australia. Current Anthropology 47: 19-20. Households on the Pacific Coast: The Northwest Coast and California in Comparative Perspective. In Household Archaeology on the Northwest Coast, edited by E. A. Sobel, D. A. Trieu Gahr, and K. M. Ames, pp. 270-285. International Monographs in Prehistory, Ann Arbor.

Bennardo, G. and D. Read.

Burke, Aaron A.

Ashley, Ceri Z.
2005 Africa 2005. Azania XL: 136-138. N.D. Mixing it Up at Africa Remix. Papers from the Institute of Archaeology 16: 143-145. Review of African Archaeology: A critical introduction, edited by A. Stahl. African Archaeological Review 22(4): 231-235. 2006 2007

Barnard, Hans
2005 Sire, il n’y a pas de Blemmyes. A re-evaluation of historical and archaeological data. In People of the Red Sea: Proceedings of the Red Sea Project II, held in the British Museum, October 2004, edited by J.C.M. Starkey. Society for Arabian Studies Monographs number 3. BAR International Series 1395. Archaeopress, Oxford. Eastern Desert Ware: Fine pottery from an arid wasteland. Egyptian Archaeology 28: 29-30.


Buccellati, Giorgio
2005 The Monumental Urban Complex at Urkesh. Report on the 16th Season of Excavations, July-September 2003. In Studies in the Civilization and Culture of Nuzi and the Hurrians 15, pp. 3-28. Eisenbrauns, Winona Lake, IN. Naming Names: The 2004 Season of Excavations at Ancient Urkesh. Backdirt: Newsletter of the Cotsen Institute of Archaeology Spring/Summer 2005: 2-4. 2006 An Archaeologist on Mars. In Confronting the Past: Archaeological and Historical Essays on Ancient Israel in Honor of William G. Dever, edited by S. Gitin, J.E. Wright, and J.P. Dessel, pp. 17-21. Eisenbrauns, Winona Lake, IN.

Barnard, Hans, Stanley H. Ambrose, Dana E. Beehr, Marcus F. Forster, Rheta E. Lanehart, Mary E. Malainey, Robert E. Parr, Micala Rider, Caroline Solazzo, and Robert M. Yohe II
2007 Mixed results of seven methods for organic residue analysis applied to one vessel with the residue of a known foodstuff. Journal of Archaeological Science 34 (1): 28-37. New Data on the Eastern Desert Ware from Sayala (Lower Nubia) in the Kunsthistorisches Museum, Vienna. Ägypten und Levante 15: 49-64.
Backdirt: Annual Review

Barnard, Hans, Alek N. Dooley, and Kym F. Faull


A browser Edition of the Royal Palace of Urkesh: Principles and Presuppositions. In Les Espaces SyroMesopotamiens: Dimensions de l’experience humaine au Proche-Orient ancient. Volume d’hommage offert a JeanClaude Margueron, Subartur 17, edited by P. Butterlin, M. Lebeau, J.Y. Montchambert, J.L. Montero Fenollos and B. Muller, pp. 49-55. Eisenbrauns, Winona Lake, IN. Conservation qua Archaeology at Tell Mozan/Urkesh. In Of the Past, for the Future: Integrating Archaeology and Conservation, Proceedings of the Conservation Theme at the 5th World Archaeological Congress, Washington D.C. 22-26 June 2003, edited by N. Agnew and J. Bridgland, pp. 73-81. The Getty Conservation Institute, Los Angeles. On (e)-tic and –emic. Backdirt: Newsletter of the Cotsen Institute of Archaeology Winter 2006: 12-13 Presentation and Interpretation of Archaeological Sites: the Case of Tell Mozan, Ancient Urkesh. In Of the Past, for the Future: Integrating Archaeology and Conservation, Proceedings of the Conservation Theme at the 5th World Archaeological Congress, Washington D.C. 22-26 June 2003, edited by N. Agnew and J. Bridgland, pp. 152-156. The Getty Conservation Institute, Los Angeles. Review of La basse vallée de l’Euphrate Syrien du néolithique à l’avènement de l’Islam: Géographie, archéologie et histoire, 2 vols, Beyrouth 2003, by B. Geyer and J.Y. Montchambert. American Journal of Archaeology 110: 511-513.

Byock, Jesse, P. Walker, J. Erlandson, P. Holck, D. Zori, M. Guðmundsson, and M. Tveskov.
2005 A Viking-age Valley in Iceland: The Mosfell Archaeological Project. Medieval Archaeology 49: 197220. Excavations at Domuztepe with Stuart Campbell. Kazı Sonuçları Toplantısı. Death in Elam during the Middle and Neo-Elamite periods in Elam and Persia. Edited by Javier Alvarez-Mon and David Stronach, chapters 2 and 7. Eisenbrauns, Winona Lake, IN. Forthcoming. Excavations at Domuztepe with Stuart Campbell. Kazı Sonuçları Toplantısı. Forthcoming. Funerary Landscapes of Susiana in the Last Half of the Second Millenium B.C. Firouz Bagherzadeh Festschrift. University of Tehran, Tehran. Resisting Empire: Elam in the First Millennium B.C. In Settlement and Society: Essays Dedicated to Robert McCormick Adams, edited by E. Stone, pp. 139-156. Cotsen Institute of Archaeology Press, Los Angeles.

Carter, Elizabeth
2005 2007

De Angelis, R., J. Cassar, and I. Kakoulli
2005 Degrado e problematiche conservative di un dipinto ad olio su pietra a Malta. Scienza e Beni Culturali XXI. Sulle Pitture Murali Riflessioni, Conoscenze, Interventi. Atti del Convegno di Studi Bressanone 12-15 Iuglio 2005: 135-145. Calusa Shell Factory on Useppa? Useppa Chronicle 9(1): 8. History Beneath Our Feet. Useppa Chronicle 9(2): 9. Useppa Island Fieldwork Reaches Successful Conclusion. Friends of the Randell Research Center 5(2): 1-2. Useppa Island’s Long Tradition of Shell Tool Manufacture Under Additional Study. Southwest Florida Archaeological Society Newsletter 22(6): 2, 8.

Dietler, John

Buccellati, G. and M. Kelly-Buccellati
2005 Urkesh as a Hurrian Religious Center. Studi Micenei ed Egeo-Anatolici 47: 27-59. Sagas and Myths of the Northmen. London and New York: Penguin Books

Byock, Jesse

Byock, Jesse, Phillip L. Walker, Jon Erlandson, Max Farrar, Magnús Guðmundsson, Magnus Hellqvist, Per Holck, Rebecca Richman, Sebastian Wärmlander and Davide Zori
2005 The Mosfell Archaeological Project, 2005 Field Season, Preliminary Excavation Report: Mosfellssveit, Iceland, July – August, 2005. Submitted to Fornleifavernd Ríkisins.

Downey, Susan
2005 A goddess and a votary or an image and a worshipper: Comments on a sculptural group from Dura-Europos. Parthica 7: 113-18. Petra Rediscovered: An Exhibition on Petra and Nabataean Sanctuaries in Jordan. AJA 109: 783-87.
Backdirt: Annual Review


Fischer, C., and Ioanna Kakoulli
2006 Multispectral and hyperspectral imaging technologies in conservation: current research and potential applications. Conservation 7: 3-16. Introduction. Cybernetics and Systems (Special Issue) 36: 719-734. Special Issue: Cultural Systems. Cybernetics and Systems 36.

Fischer, M.D., D. Read, and S. Lyon

Proche-Orient ancient. Volume d’hommage offert a JeanClaude Margueron, Subartur 17, edited by P. Butterlin, M. Lebeau, J.Y. Montchambert, J.L. Montero Fenollos and B. Muller, pp. 403-414. Eisenbrauns, Winona Lake, IN.

Klein, Cecelia
2005 Una nueva interpretación de la escultura de Coatlicue,” in Las mujeres en Mesoamérica, edited by María Rodríguez-Shadow, pp. 189-201. Universidad Autónoma del Estado de México, Toluca. (Proceedings of the III Mesa de Estudios de Género, Primera Reunion Internacional, Instituto Nacional de Antropología e Historia, Departamento de Ethnología y Antropología Social, Mexico City, Mexico.)

Flad, Rowan K., with Zhu Jiping, Wang Changsui, Pochan Chen, Sun Zhibin, Lothar von Falkenhausen, and Li Shuicheng
2005 Archaeological and Chemical Evidence for Early Salt Production in China. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 102.35: 12618-12622. Chinese translation forthcoming in Faguo Hanxue.

Klein, Cecelia (with Eulogio Guzman and Maya Stanfield-Mazzi)
2005 Reply to Pieter Jolly. Current Anthropology 46(1): 127128.

Frederick, Charles D., Barbara Winsborough, and Virginia S. Popper Lane, Paul, Ceri Ashley, and G. Oteyo
2005 Geoarchaeological Investigations in the Northern Basin of Mexico. In Production and Power at Postclassic Xaltocan, edited by E. Brumfiel. Arqueología de México, No. 6. University of Pittsburgh Latin American Archaeology Publications and Instituto Nacional de Antropología e Historia, México, D.F. 2006

New Dates for Kansyore and Urewe Wares from Northern Nyanza, Kenya. Azania XLI.

Lane, Paul, Ceri Ashley, Oula Seitsonen, Paul Harvey, Sada Mire, and Frederick Odede
2007 The Transition to Farming in Eastern Africa: New Faunal and Dating Evidence from Wadh Lang’o and Usenge, Kenya. Antiquity 81: 62-81. Sxwoxwiymelh: Summer 2005 Excavations. The Midden 38(3):11-15.

Kaplan, E., R. Newman, E. Howe, E. Pearlstein, and J. Levinson
N.D. Análisis técnicos de qeros en la collection del Museo Inka. Journal of the Museo Inca, Institudo de Arqueologia, Cusco, National University San Antonio Abad. In Press. Intercultural links and trade of painting materials in the Graeco Roman period. In Proceedings of the Conference on Mural Paintings of the Silk Road: Cultural Exchange of the East and West. The 29th International Symposium on the Conservation and Restoration of Cultural Property, 24-26 January 2006. Archetype Publishing. In Press. Introduction to the Archaeo-zoology of the ābi. Studi Micenei ed Egeo-Anatolici 47: 61-66. Urkesh and the North: Recent Discoveries. Studies on the Civilization and Culture of the Nuzi and the Hurrians 15: 29-40. 2006 Gilgamesh at Urkesh? Literary Motifs and Iconographic Identifications. In Les Espaces SyroMesopotamiens: Dimensions de l’experience humaine au
Backdirt: Annual Review

Lenert, Michael, and Dana Lepofsky

Kakoulli, Ioanna.

March, T., L. Bruno, H. Kariya, W. Y. Ng, E. Pearlstein, and H. Stockman-Todd
N.D. Conservation of Assyrian Reliefs at the Brooklyn Museum. Submitted for peer review. Introduction. In Agricultural Strategies, edited by Joyce Marcus and Charles Stanish. Cotsen Institute of Archaeology Press, Los Angeles. Agricultural Strategies. Cotsen Archaeology Press, Los Angeles. Institute of

Marcus, Joyce, and Charles Stanish

Kelly- Buccellati, Marilyn

Marcus, Joyce, and Charles Stanish, editors

Mohanty, R.K., and M.L. Smith
2005 Excavation at Sisupalgarh. Centre for Archaeological Studies and Training, Eastern India Newsletter November 2005: 17.



Sisupalgarh 2006 Excavation Field Report. On file, Archaeological Survey of India, New Delhi, and Department of Anthropology, University of California, Los Angeles. Excavations at Sisupalgarh 2005. Man and Environment. Journal of the Indian Society for Prehistoric and Quaternary Studies 31(1): 27-32.

Papadopoulos, John K.
2005 Antiquity Depicted. In Antiquity and Photography: Early Photographs of Mediterranean Sites, by C.L. Claire, J.K. Papadopoulos, L. Stewart, and A. Szegedy-Maszak, pp. 104-147. Thames & Hudson and The J. Paul Getty Museum, London and Los Angeles. The Early Iron Age Cemetery at Torone. (Monumenta Archaeologica 24). The Cotsen Institute of Archaeology, Los Angeles. The Art of Antiquity: Piet de Jong and the Athenian Agora. Potamos Press and the American School of Classical Studies, Athens and Princeton. Mounds of Memory: Burial Tumuli in the Illyrian Landscape. In New Directions in Albanian Archaeology, edited by L. Bejko and R. Hodges, pp. 7584. International Centre for Albanian Archaeology, Tirana. Shattering the Relics of King Minos: The Reconstruction of Knossos, the Old Museum at Herakleion, and the 1926 Earthquake. In, eds., Amymona Erga: Essays in Honor of Vassilis Lambrinoudakis, edited by E. Simantoni-Bournia, A.A. Lemos, N. Kourou, and L. Mendoni. Archaiognosia, Athens.

Mommsen H., A. Bonanno, K. Chetcuti Bonavita, I. Kakoulli, M. Musumeci, C. Sagona, A. Schwedt, N. C. 2006 Vella and N. Zacharias
2006 Characterization of Maltese Pottery of the Neolithic, Bronze Age and Punic Phases by Neutron Activation Analysis. In Geomaterials in Cultural Heritage. Geological Society, London. Illryica Pix: The exploitation of bitumen in ancient Albania. In Current Developments and Future Directions in Albanian Archaeology: Festschrift for Muzafer Korkuti, edited by L. Bejko and R. Hodges, pp. 94-106. International Centre for Albanian Archaeology, Tirana. Linking with a wider world: Greeks and “Barbarians”. In Classical Archaeology: Blackwell Studies in Global Archaeology, edited by S. Alcock and R. Osborne, pp. 383-400. Blackwell Publishing Limited, Oxford. The View from East Greece: Miletos, Samos and Ephesos. In Debating Orientalization: Multidisciplinary Approaches to Change in the Ancient Mediterranean, MMA 10, edited by C. Riva and N. Vella, pp. 66-84. Equinox, Oxford. 2007 Apollo, Dionysus and Zeus: On the Sacred Landscape of Ancient Naxos. In Amymona Erga: Essays in Honor of Vassilis Lambrinoudakis, edited by E. SimantoniBournia, A.A. Lemos, N. Kourou, and L. Mendoni. Archaiognosia, Athens. Troy between Bronze and Iron Ages: Myth, Cult and Memory in a Sacred Landscape. In EPOS: Reconsidering Greek Epic and Aegean Bronze Age Archaeology, edited by R. Laffineur and S. Morris. Aegaeum 27. Forthcoming in 2007.

Morris, Sarah

Papadopoulos, J.K., L. Bejko, and S.P. Morris
2007 Excavations at the Prehistoric Burial Tumulus of Lofkënd in Albania: A Preliminary Report for the 2004-2005 Seasons. American Journal of Archaeology 111(1): 105-147. Sella Cacatoria: A Study of the Potty in Archaic and Classical Athens. Hesperia 75:1-32. Introduction and compiler for a special issue of the Journal of the American Institute for Conservation in memory of Carolyn Rose, 44:3. Developing an adhesives course for conservators, in preparation for the journal Studies in Conservation, IIC, London. The Emergence of Complex Society in the Titicaca Basin: The View from the North. In Andean Archaeology III: North and South, edited by William H. Isbell and Helaine Silverman, chapter 10. Springer, New York.

Papadopoulos, J.K. and K.L. Lynch

Pearlstein, E.


Pearlstein, E. and E. Pourchot
N. D.

Ochs, E., A.P. Graesch, A. Mittmann, T. Bradbury, and R. Repetti
2006 Video Ethnography and Ethnoarchaeological Tracking. In The Work-Family Handbook: Multi-Disciplinary Perspectives and Approaches to Research, edited by M. Pitt-Catsouphes, K. Kossek, and S. Sweet, pp. 387-409. Lawrence Erlbaum, New Jersey.

Plourde, Aimee, and Charles Stanish

Backdirt: Annual Review


Posnansky, M., A. Reid, and C. Ashely
2005 Archaeology on Lolui Island, Uganda 1964-5. Azania XL: 1-29.


The Archaeology of Food Preference. American Anthropologist 108(3): 480-493. The Archaeology of South Asian Cities. Journal of Archaeological Research 14(2): 97-142. How Ancient Agriculturalists Managed Yield Fluctuations Through Crop Selection and Reliance on Wild Plants: An Example from Central India. Economic Botany 60(1): 39-48. Review of The Indus Civilization: A Contemporary Perspective, by G. Possehl. Asian Perspectives 45(2): 293295.

Prentiss, William C., James C. Chatters, Michael Lenert, David S. Clarke, and Robert C. Boyle
2005 The Archaeology of the Plateau of Northwestern North America During the Late Prehistoric Period (3500-200 B.P.): Evolution of Hunting and Gathering Societies. Journal of World Prehistory 19: 47-118. Kinship Algebra Expert System (KAES): A Software Implementation of a Cultural Theory. Social Science Computer Review 24(1): 43-67. Some Observations on Resilience and Robustness in Human Systems. Cybernetics and Systems (Special Issue) 36: 773-802. Tasmanian Knowledge and Skill: Maladaptive Imitation or Adequate Technology? American Antiquity 71: 164-184. 2007 Artifact Classification: A Conceptual and Methodological Approach. Left Coast Press, Walnut Creek. Le Beauronnien de Solvieux: une industrie du Paléolithique supérieur ancien. Bulletin de la Société Préhistorique Ariège-Pyrénées 58: 143-156. On fractal forms and the deterioration of artefacts. Studies in Conservation 50: 127-138. Pigment Analysis: Potentialities and Problems. Periodicodi Mineralogia 73, Special Issue 3: A Showcase of the Italian research in applied petrology: 227-237.

Read, D.

Stanish, Charles
2006 Prehispanic strategies of agricultural intensification in the Titicaca Basin of Peru and Bolivia. In Agricultural Strategies, edited by J. Marcus and C. Stanish, pp. 364397. Cotsen Institute of Archaeology, Los Angeles. Agricultural intensification in the Titicaca Basic. In Seeking a Richer Harvest, edited by Tina Thurston and Christopher Fisher, pp. 125-139. Springer, New York


Stanish, Charles, Amanda B. Cohen, and Mark S. Aldenderfer, editors
2005 Advances in the Archaeology of the Titicaca Basin-I. Cotsen Institute of Archaeology Press, Los Angeles.

Sackett, James R.

Scott, David A.

Stanish, Charles, Amanda B. Cohen, Edmundo de la Vega, Elizabeth Arkush, Aimee Plourde, and Carol Schultze
2005 Archaeological reconnaissance in the northern Titicaca Basin. In Advances in Titicaca Basin ArchaeologyI, edited by C. Stanish, A. Cohen, and M.Aldenderfer, chapter 17. Cotsen Institute of Archaeology Press, Los Angeles. The E Jun Qi Metal Tallies: Inscribed Texts and Ritual Contexts. In Text and Ritual in Early China, edited by Martin Kern, pp. 79-123. University of Washington Press, Seattle. Forerunners of the Houma Bronze Styles: The Shangguo Sequence. Gugong xueshu jikan 23: 111-174. Hayashi Minao (1925-2006). Artibus Asiae 65.2: 359367. Review of Written on Bamboo and Silk, by Tsuen-hsuin Tsien. Technology and Culture 46: 410-411.

Scott, David A. (with Giacomo Chiari)
2005 2005

von Falkenhausen, Lothar

Scott, David A., and G. Eggert.
2006-7 Iron and Steel: Corrosion, Colourants, Conservation. Archetype Press: London.

Sidebotham, Steven E., Hans Barnard, Lisa A. Pintozzi, and Roberta S. Tomber
2005 The enigma of Kab Marfu’a: Precious gems in Egypt’s Eastern Desert. Minerva 16(1): 24-26. Networks, Territories and the Cartography of Ancient States. Annals of the Association of American Geographers 95(4): 832-849.
Backdirt: Annual Review

Smith, Monica L.



Chinese Society in the Age of Confucius (1000-250 BC): The Archaeological Evidence. Cotsen Institute of Archaeology Press, Los Angeles. Ancient Salt Production and Landscape Archaeology in the Upper Yangzi Basin: Preliminary Studies / Changjiang shangyou gudai yanye yu jingguan kaogu de chubu yanjiu 長江上遊古代鹽業與景觀考古的初步研究 (with Li Shuicheng 李水城). Salt Archaeology in China / Zhongguo yanye kaogu 中國鹽業考古, vol. 1. Kexue chubanshe, Beijing. Egypt’s earliest granaries: evidence from the Fayum. Egyptian Archaeolgy 27(Autumn): 12-15.

von Falkenhausen, Lothar and Li Shuicheng (editors)
2006 2007

Entangled, connected or protected? The power of knots and knotting in ancient Egypt. In Through a Glass Darkly: Magic, Dreams, and Prophecy in Ancient Egypt, edited by K. Szpakowska, pp. 243-269. The Classical Press of Wales, Swansea. Neolithische Korbflechterei. In Vor 12.000 Jahren in Anatolien. Die ältesten Monumente der Menschheit, pp. 230-255. Badisches Landesmuseum, Karlsruhe. Roman artillery balls from Qasr Ibrim, Egypt. Sudan & Nubia 10: 64-78.

Wilkins, Alan, Hans Barnard, and Pamela J. Rose

Wendrich, W.Z. and R.T.J. Cappers

Wendrich, Willemina Z., Roger S. Bagnall, René T. J. Cappers, James A. Harrell, Steven E. Sidebotham, and Roberta S. Tomber
2006 Berenike Crossroads: The Integration of Information. In Excavating Asian history: interdisciplinary studies in archaeology and history, edited by Norman Yoffee and Bradley L. Crowell, pp. 15-66. The University of Arizona Press, Tucson. Basketry. In The 70 Greatest Inventions, edited by B. Fagan, pp. 34-36. Thames & Hudson, London. Tutankhamun and the Golden Age of the Pharaohs. Near Eastern Archaeology 67(4): 226-228. 2006 Archaeology and Sustainable Tourism in Egypt: Protecting Community, Antiquities, and Environment. In Of the Past, for the Future: Integrating Archaeology and Conservation, edited by N. Agnew and J. Bridgland, pp. 184-190. The Getty Conservation Institute, Los Angeles. Body knowledge. Ethnoarchaeological Learning and the Interpretation of Ancient Technology. In L’apport de l’Égypte à l’histoire des techniques, edited by Bernard Mathieu, Dimitri Meeks, and Myriam Wissa, pp. 267275. Institut Français d’Archéologie Orientale, Cairo. The Çatalhöyük Basketry. In Changing Materialities at Çatalhöyük: Reports from the 1995–99 Seasons, edited by I. Hodder, chapter 15, pp. 419-424. Mc Donald Institute for Archaeological Research, Cambridge.

Wendrich, Willeke

Backdirt: Annual Review


Recent Faculty and Student Grants & Awards
Arnold, Jeanne E. (Channel Islands Lab)
Cotsen Institute of Archaeology Ahmanson Field Research Grant UCLA Academic Senate Faculty Research Grant

Carter, Elizabeth
National Geographic Grant no. 7881-05, “Elusive Complexity: Excavations at Domuztepe” Ahmanson Field Research Grants UCLA COR Grant Samuel H. Kress Foundation Grant for archaeological field conservation at Domuztepe

Bernard, Julienne
UCLA Institute of American Cultures Predoctoral Fellowship UCLA Institute of American Cultures Research Grant Ivor Noel Hume Fellowship Friends of Archaeology Research Fellowship

Dietler, John
NSF Dissertation Improvement Grant Department of Anthropology Special Research Grant Friends of Archaeology Research Fellowship Department of Anthropology Fellowship Cotsen Institute of Archaeology Director’s Grant

Buccellati, Giorgio
UCLA COR Grant Metropolitan Museum of Art Grant Steinmetz Family Foundation Grant Cotsen Institute of Archaeology Ahmanson Grant

Donley, Colleen
UCLA Institute of American Cultures Research Grant Latin American Studies Center Small Grant Anthropology Clement Meighan Research Fellowship Friends of Archaeology Summer Fellowship

Burke, Aaron
Ahmanson Grant UCLA Academic Senate Faculty Research Grant for the Levant Geodatabase Project UCLA Digital Humanities Fellowship for the Levant Geodatabase Project

Fong, Kelly
Cota-Robles Graduate Fellowship Jacob K. Javitz Fellowship NSF Graduate Research Fellowship

Carballo, David
National Geographic Society Grant for “Proyecto Arqueológico La Laguna, Tlaxcala: Proto-Urban Social Transformations and State Expansion in Prehispanic Central Mexico” Foundation for the Advancement of Mesoamerican Studies Grant for “Proyecto Arqueológico La Laguna, Tlaxcala: Proto-Urban Social Transformations and State Expansion in Prehispanic Central Mexico”
104 Backdirt: Annual Review

Gleeson, Molly
George Stout Grant from the Foundation of the American Institute for Conservation

Graesch, Anthony
Department of Anthropology Special Research Grant University of California Dissertation Year Fellowship Friends of Archaeology Research Fellowship

Lynch, John
Graduate Research Mentorship Program Fellowship

Marston, John
NSF Graduate Research Fellowship

Morris, Sarah
Samuel H. Kress Foundation Grant for conservation $3,500 UCLA COR Grant for analysis of materials from Albania $3,000

Hristova, Petya
UCLA Dissertation Year Fellowship

Johnson, Ilana
National Science Foundation Dissertation Improvement Grant UCLA Institute of American Cultures Research Grant UCLA Latin American Center Research Grant UCLA Faculty Women’s Club Scholarship

Mullane, Liz
Graduate Research Mentorship Program Fellowship

Pansire, Kandace
Graduate Research Mentorship Program Fellowship

Papadopoulos, John
Institute for Aegean Prehistory Grant (The Art of Antiquity) $20,000 Institute for Aegean Prehistory Grant (Liatovouni: The Molossian Cemetery) $6,000 UCLA COR Academic Senate Grant (The Art of Antiquity) $6,000 UCLA COR Academic Senate Grant (The Early Iron Age in the Athenian Agora) $3,000 Kress Foundation Grant (The Art of Antiquity) $42,000

Kakoulli, Ioanna
Ahmanson Grant $2000 UCLA COR Grant $3000 Currently applying for a NSF Grant for $257,000

Kelly-Buccellati, Marilyn
Catholic Biblical Association Grant International Institute for Mesopotamian Area Studies Grant Urkesh Founders Grant

Pearlstein, Ellen
NEH Grant for Educational Programs at the UCLA/Getty Master’s Program in the Conservation of Ethnographic and Archaeological Materials $78,136 Individual Professional Development Scholarship to study Lakota Winter Count from the Foundation of American Institute for Conservation

Keimer, Kyle
Cotsen Institute of Archaeology Director’s Grant Del Amo Fellowship

Klein, Cecelia

Lenert, Mike
Quality of Education/Department of Anthropology Fellowship NSF Dissertation Improvement Grant

Pickman, Steven
Camilla Chandler Frost Objects Conservation Laboratory Summer Internship at LACMA

Backdirt: Annual Review


Scott, David A.
UCLA COR Grant to study the materials from the Petrie Museum, University of London UCLA Office of Instructional Development Grant for undergraduate instructional material for conservation teaching, especially for introductory Art History courses

Thompson, Christine
Samuel H. Kress Research Fellowship for research at the W.F. Albright Institute of Archaeological Research, Jerusalem and the American School of Classical Studies in Athens

von Falkenhausen, Lothar
ACLS China Exchange Fellowship for Professor Sun Hua of Beijing University, who will visit UCLA for six months in Spring 2007 $18,000 UCLA COR Academic Senate Grant

Simpson, Bethany
Chancellor’s Prize Recruitment Fellowship

Smith, Adam Daniel
Henry Luce Foundation/ACLS Grants in East Asian Archaeology and Early History Dissertation Fellowship for “An Archaeological Study of Literate Practices of Anyang, China”

Wake, Thomas
SENACYT Research Grant for a ground penetrating radar survey and the excavation of Sitio Drago, and the establishment of the Museo Arqueológico Boca del Drago $49,700

Smith, Monica
NSF Grant no. SBR 0550035. “Excavations and Geophysical Survey at the Early Historic City of Sisupalgarh, India”. (three-year grant) $150,873 NSF Research Experience for Undergraduates Supplemental Grant $4000 Cotsen Institute of Archaeology Ahmanson Grant for “Archaeological Excavations and Geophysics at the Ancient City of Sisupalgarh, India” $2600 UCLA Office of Instructional Development Grant for livestock demonstration in conjunction with lecture on animal domestication, Anthropology 8 $250

Wells, Eric
Graduate Research Mentorship Program Fellowship

Wendrich, Willeke
NEH Grant for the UCLA Encyclopedia of Egyptology $325,000 AEF Grant (American Research Center in Egypt) for site management in Karanis $25,000 UCLA COR Academic Senate Grant $6000 Office of Instructional Development Grant for Karanis VR modeling $13,104

Stanish, Charles
NSF Grant no. BCS 0621398. “Interregional trade and the development of archaic states”. (with Michael Moseley and Ryan Williams) NSF Grant no. BCS 0633074. Dissertation Improvement Grant with Coleen Donley. “Metals and Imperial Strategies of Administration in the Provinces”.

Werden, Liz
Friends of Archaeology Research Grant FAIC George Stout Grant

Zhang, Liangren
University of California Dissertation Year Fellowship

Szuchman, Jeffrey
University of California Dissertation Year Fellowship UC Office of the President Dissertation Fellowship
106 Backdirt: Annual Review

Cotsen Institute Donor Honor Roll
We would like to take this opportunity to thank everyone who has donated a significant amount to the Cotsen Institute of Archaeology since 1980, the earliest for which we have records. Below you will see total donations of $1,000 or more given per person or organization.

$1,000,000 +

Lloyd and Margit Cotsen The Ahmanson Foundation The Cotsen Family Trust The J. Paul Getty Trust

$10,000 - $15,000

Friends of Archaeology Phyllis Moriarty Estate Samuel H. Kress Foundation Steinmetz Family Foundation Ruth B. Baus

$100,000- $1,000,000

$50,000 - $100,000

1-Take MultiMedia Charlotte K. Anderson The Getty Foundation I.H. and Anna Grancell Foundation International Institute for Mesopotamian Area Studies Patricia A. Laird Gail K. Lieberfarb Peterson Publishing Company Merrick Posnansky Robert I. Stern Family Trust Rutter Development Corporation Timothy Paul Seymour Estate

George Polinger Polinger Family Foundation Stewart A. Resnick Louis H. Savett Glen Schwendemann Arthur L. Sherwood Berniece Skinner Charles S. Stanish Baerbel Struthers Harold Thom, Jr. Ann M. Tonkin David S. Whitley David Zuccaro

Ambassador International Cultural Association Richard M. Leventhal William A. Steinmetz Charles W. Steinmetz David B. Wake Marvalee H. Wake

$5,000 - $10,000

$1,000 - $5,000

$30,000 - $50,000

Iona Benson Jewish Community Foundation Harry Lenart National Geographic Society Neutrogena Corporation Sandy and Ernestine Elster Fund Mary Lou Steinmetz

$15,000 - $30,000

Deborah Arnold Marilyn P. Beaudry-Corbett Boeing Company Combined Jewish Philanthropies Robert D. Daniels Ernestine S. Elster Stephen J. Graeber Arlene S. Harris Bruce E. Hector Heinz Charitable Trust Gordon E. Hull Ivor N. Hume Joyce Humphreys Institute for Aegean Prehistory Howard K. Lee Herbert L. Lucas, Jr. H.V. Nootbaar Beth Rogers JoAnne F. Van Tilburg Wenner-Gren Foundation for Anthropological Research

Ancient Enterprises Anna Grancell Charitable Trust Archaeology Institute of America Jeanne M. Bailey Nancy S. Bernard Edith G. Bleitz James T. Bradbury Wayne G. Bramstedt California Council for the Humanities, Inc. Connie Swanson Travel, Inc. DAZ Systems, Inc. (Deborah Arnold and Walt Zipperman) Patricia S. Dillon Mercedes Duque Timothy K. Earle Eliza H. Earle Eleanor C. Earle Elizabeth Lloyd Davis Foundation Far Horizons Archaeological and Cultural Trips, Inc. Nigel Fitzpatrick Gutman Family Trust Lady R. Harrington Katherine Hullett Edward D. Johnson Norma Kershaw William L. Lane, Jr. Eleanor M. Leaventhal Piers A. Litherland Bruce L. Ludwig Elizabeth R. Macaulay Metropolitan Development Corporation Miriam Michaels Arthur H. Muir, Jr. Oakmont Investment Company Erma B. O’Brien Farley M. O’Brien Michael T. O’Brien Margaret Polinger

Harold E. Adelson Guillermo Algaze Alia the Royal Jordanian Airlines American Academy in Rome Amoco Egypt Guadalupe Aquirre Wesley Arnold Margaret C. Arvey The Arvey Foundation BT and Associates Janice V. Bacchi James E. Baldwin Harris D. Bass Nancy H. Baxter Bell Industries, Inc. Millie R. Bendat Julius S. Bendat Chris Bennett R. Reese Benson Allan H. Bernard Charles D. Bieber Frank G. Bock Robert F. Boggs David R. Boochever Henry P. Borenstein Michael F. Branigan John C. Bretney William F. Cahill Frances E. Cahill Kathryn S. Cali Capital Group Companies, Inc. Iris Carmel Lowell Chamberlain Beverly B. Childers David A. Cintron Patricia H. Civalleri Roger V. Civallari Donald M. Clary Carl W. Clewlow, Jr.
Backdirt: Annual Review


Roger H. Colten Comminvest Committee on University of Boulder Colorado Courtney B. Conte Grayson D. Cook Lynn Cooper Kenton Cooper Edwin L. Cooper Donald L. Corbett Harry J. Cornwall Coso Junction Ranch Store Alan S. Coulson Richard M. Coulston Jeanne W. Coulston Carol Crouse Roy Danchick Dodie Helen Danchick Elinor David Nan H. Deal Keith A. Dixon Sally Donohue David Doremus James M. Duque Robert Dyson, Jr. Edgehill Developers John C. Elliott Mary J. Enk Leon W. Enk FGH Architects, Inc. Fassberg Construction Company Fidelity Investments S. and L. Stockel Revocable Trust First Property Realty Corporation Muriel S. Fonda Myron Forst Foundation for Archaeology, Rock Art Bernard Frischer Armand J. Fulco Bina Garfield G.E. Garing Gordon P. Getty Helle Girey George Girey Gwynne M. Gloege Frances Godfrey Beverly M. Godwin Doris V. Goodman Michael A. Gottesman Alvin Grancell Stewart L. Grow, Jr. Ruth P. Gutman Rowena M. Haas Robert A. Harwood Gwendolyn E. Harwood Patrick K. Healy Hebrew Union College Jewish Institute of Religion Justina Hector Susan M. Hector Deanna M. Hemphill William H. Herman Stephanie M. Hesen Edwin A. Hession Steve Holcomb Marillyn H. Holmes John F. Holz David A. Holzgang 108 Backdirt: Annual Review

Mary W. Horner Lane S. Howell James K.P. Miller Living Trust Jansport, Inc. Jewish Federation Council of Greater Los Angeles Tracy E. Johnson Johnson & Johnson Contribution Fund Johnson & Higgins Johnson-Grau Jones-Bley Kara Knack Koninklijke Institute Voor De Tropen Louise Krasniewicz John P. Krill L. Watson, Inc. Ruth J. Lavine Steven A. Le Blanc Nancy C. Ledding Marvin H. Leibowitz Mary Jane Leland David M. Leventhal Lester Levitt John W. Lissack Lockheed Martin Corporation Lockheed Martin Corporation Foundation Ann M. Lockie MILA/Peru Tours Jack McCreery Edward McIntyre Mellon West Cynthia L. Mercer Robert J. Mercer Richard F. Mills Irene T. Motta William Newman Amos S. Newton Barbara Nielsen Patricia Oliansky Joel Oliansky Sandra L. Orellana William W. Orrange Pardee Homes Weldon R. Parker John S. Peck Bill Petty Holly Pittman Leon Pomerance Judith F. Porcasi Peter P. Porcasi Nancy K. Porter Kathleen Prado Joyce S. Propper Grant E. Propper Patti H. Rabbitt Mitchell C. Reback Ruth Wynroth Estate Ruth Anderson Estate Sam and Sooky Goldman Foundation San Manuel Band of Mission Indians Julia L. Sanchez Gordon Saver Eunice H. Saver Marissa A. Schleicher Allison R. Schleicher, III Richard C. Seaver Thomas E. Segar

Charlotte Self Stephanie J. Serlin Seven Springs Foundation Robert M. Shafton Sally G. Shafton Fran Sherwood Jill Silton Charlene S. Singleton V.D. Snow Jerome H. Snyder Socket Screws, Inc. George J. Spangler Nicholas Stanley-Price Ronald E. Steensland Jeanie Steinmetz Elga Stepans John L. Stern Elaine Stone Vita M. Tannenbaum Elizabeth A. Tehan Helene Tournaire-Cooper Arnold Travis JoAnne Van Tilburg Van Tilburg, Banvard, and Soderbergh, AIA Marilyn Van Wassenhove Robert E. Van Wassenhove Suebelle S. Verity David S. Verity Gerald L. Vincent Thomas Wake Mike Walsh Lucilla Warren Lisa Watson Joseph R. Weaver Mitzi Webber Elizabeth M. Welty Western Estates, Inc. Barbara L. Wood

Sign up to vote on this title
UsefulNot useful