DR. FREDRICK KYALO MANTHI, National Museums of Kenya, Nairobi, Kenya, received funding in October 2009 to aid research on 'A Further Investigation for Microfauna in the Plio-Pleistocene Hominin Sites of Northwestern Kenya.' Mammalian remains have a number of features that make them important in ecological studies.
DR. FREDRICK MANTHI, National Museums of Kenya, Nairobi, Kenya, received an Engaged Anthropology Grant in August 2012 to aid 'Public Engagement in Palaeontological Investigations of the Plio-Pleistocene Nachukui Formation, Northern Kenya.' The Lake Turkana Basin in northern Kenya has contributed significantly to understanding the evolution of human and non-human species during the Plio-Pleistocene.
Preliminary abstract: Prehistory research in Africa has yielded an unmatched record that has contributed significantly to understanding the evolutionary history of many faunal species. The human fossil material recovered from many African sites has, particularly, placed the region as the birth place for humanity. Work to unearth more material to help bridge gaps in the human evolutionary tree continues to date. This work involves Principal Investigator/s (PI/s) and a host of research assistants. Research assistants play very significant roles in the successful completion of the projects.
Preliminary abstract: The grand narrative of 'Bantu migration' was archaeologically investigated in Eastern Africa during 1960- 70s. Since then and despite the widespread application of more socially informed and more refined scientific approaches in archaeology, these supposed Bantu sites have remained unexplored. Pottery forms and decoration were used as the primary means to identify and date these Bantu archaeological sites and such investigations were largely offered to elaborate the historic-linguistic data (e.g. Ehret 1974).
DR. DIANE E. LYONS, University of Calgary, Calgary, Canada, was awarded a grant in October 2011 to aid research on 'The Yeha Pottery Project.' Material signatures of marginalized identities of female market potters living near Yeha in central Tigray, northern highland Ethiopia. were investigated. The study builds upon a previous study of market potters in eastern Tigray and provides a regional comparison. In Tigray and other societies across sub-Saharan Africa, different types of artisans are marginalized.
Preliminary abstract: This study investigates material signatures of caste identities of Slehleka market potters in Tigray State in northern highland Ethiopia. Artisan marginalization is found in many societies across sub-Saharan Africa but material means to investigate its history are needed. This study builds upon two previous studies of Tigray's marginalized potters in central and eastern Tigray.
DR. DIANE E. LYONS, University of Calgary, Calgary, Canada, was awarded a grant in October 2008, to aid research on 'Edagahamus Potters and the Identity of Stigma.' In highland Ethiopia, and in many societies in sub-Saharan Africa, artisans are socially marginalized because they are believed to possess dangerous occult powers or because their craft diminishes their social worth.
AMANDA L. LOGAN, then a student at University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, Michigan, was awarded funding in October 2010 to aid research on 'Practicing Change, Remembering Continuity: Incorporating Global Foods into Daily Routines in Banda, Ghana (AD 1000 to Present),' supervised by Dr. Carla M. Sinopoli. This study examined how global pressures impacted daily life in West Africa through the lens of food and domestic architecture.
DR. AMANDA LOGAN, Northwestern University, Evanston, Illinois, was awarded funding in February 2014 to aid engaged activities on 'Histories of Food, Home, and Field: Celebrating Women's Knowledge and Sustainable Choices in Banda, Ghana.' Building on research supported by a Wenner-Gren grant in 2010, this engagement project involved the presentation of long-term histories of food, home, and field to the community of Banda, Ghana. After several weeks of community consultation, a 'Remembering the Past Celebration' was held at the Banda Cultural Centre in July 2014.
Preliminary abstract: This research project examines the relationship between interregional maritime exchange, socio-political change, and the organization of daily life in pre-modern coastal Nakhon Si Thammarat province, Thailand.