Sandoval-Garcia, Dr. Carlos, U. of Costa Rica, San Jose, Costa Rica - To aid research on ' Racialization, Urban Segregation and Subject Formation in La Carpio, Costa Rica'
DR. CARLOS SANDOVAL-GARCIA, University of Costa Rica, San Jose, Costa Rica, was awarded a grant in November 2005 to aid research on 'Racialization, Urban Segregation and Subject Formation in La Carpio, Costa Rica.' Bordered on the north and south by polluted rivers and on the east by the largest garbage dump in Costa Rica, La Carpio is a poor and humble urban community where half of its about 22,000 inhabitants have a Nicaraguan background. The community was founded in 1994, when a small group of families took possession of land owned by the Costa Rican social security system. With access to the settlement limited to a single road, the community is effectively isolated from its neighbors and from the metropolitan area. The project invited members of La Carpio to join a literary contest in which they would write, draw, or be interviewed on their lived experience. At the end, 415 people submitted their works. Despite the fact that members of the community have experienced a wide number of mobilizations around claims for justice -- including access to property rights and basic public facilities such as water, electricity, education, among others -- most of their narratives emphasize insecurity and criminality as key themes for representing their community. The project reflects on some of the multiple factors that could explain why they do not often translate their mobilizations into their narratives. It also explores the implications of this lack of a more visible, communal counter-memory for their collective identity formation and their pursuit of practical (not only formal) citizenship.
Sandoval-Garcia, Carlos. 2007. Nuestras Vidas En Carpio. Editorial Universidad de Costa Rica: San Jose, Coast
Aikhenvald, Dr. Alexandra Y., La Trobe U., Melbourne, Australia - To aid research on 'Arawak Languages: Reconstruction and Culture History'
DR. ALEXANDRA Y. AIKHENVALD, La Trobe University, Melbourne, Australia, received funding in February 2003 to aid research on 'Arawak languages: reconstruction and culture history.' The focus of this project was a linguistic reconstruction of linguistic and cultural pre-history of Arawak languages, correlated with ethnohistories and ethnographies of the Arawak speaking peoples, with a special focus on Arawak languages north of the Amazon. Geographically, Arawak languages form geographically the most extensive and the most diversified family in South America. The total number of living languages is over forty. The limits of the family were established by the early twentieth century. Comparative and historical studies of the Arawak family, and of individual Arawak peoples, have a long history. This project focussed on the major issues relating to the internal classification of Arawak languages and reconstruction of proto-Arawak, especially that of the cultural lexicon. The project provided a lexical and grammatical reconstruction of various subgroups within the Arawak language family, with special attention to investigating the impact of areal diffusion on the relationships between languages within this family, and to reconstructing various aspects of culture, with a view to refining our understanding of the putative migrations of the Arawak-speaking peoples. Special attention has been paid to fieldwork-based investigation of the Baniwa of Içana/Kurripako dialect continuum, and of Tariana, the only Arawak language spoken in the multilingual area of the Vaupés River Basin. The academic output of the project consists of over twelve scholarly papers and several academic monographs.
Niang, Dr. Khady, U. Cheikh Anta Diop de Dakar, Dakar, Senegal -To aid reserch on 'Midlle Stone Age Occupations in Senegambia'
Preliminary abstract: Homo sapiens dispersal across and out of the African continent is hotly debated. Genetic evidences, play in favour for an west african admixture area before recent dispersal around 100.000 ka but archaeological data are sporadic and well dated site inexistant . The project principal aim is the enlightement of MSA occupation, acquisition of a set of OSL datings from stratified MSA sites and finally the description of the lithic technology of these sites. The need for a refined chronology , and technological definition of the local variant of MSA in west Africa is critical in our attempt to understand H. sapiens dynamics in Africa before inter-continental migrations. The research will be conducted on the senegalese littoral between Tiemassas and Pointe Sarene. Systematic survey and test excavation will provide soil samples to be dated by OSL. Lithic compared analyses between MSA lithic materiel recovered out of stratigraphic context and new archaeological material will be useful to refine to refine technological behavior and cultural trends.
Lentz, Dr. David Lewis, U. of Cincinnati, Cincinnati, OH - To aid research on 'Agroforestry and Water Management Practices of the Ancient Maya of Tikal'
DR. DAVID LEWIS LENTZ, University of Cincinnati, Cincinnati, Ohio, received funding in April 2008 to aid research on 'Agroforestry and Water Management Practices of the Ancient Maya of Tikal.' The main objective of this project has been to explore the relationship between the ancient Maya of Tikal and their local environment. Of particular interest are the forest resources required to build and sustain their great polity and the nature and complexity of the water management system. Research areas have focused on: 1) the impact of Maya agroforestry practices as reflected in domesticated plant use and forest restructuring through time; 2) changes in water management adaptations as they affected and were affected by broader political-economic changes; 3) the importance of 'bajos' and their role in resource extraction, and 4) the Tikal reservoirs which represented a carefully designed water storage and hydraulic distribution system.
Gursky, Dr. Sharon L., Texas A&M U., College Station, TX - To aid research on 'Determinants of Gregariousness in the Spectral Tarsier, *Tarsius spectrum*
DR. SHARON GURSKY, of Texas A&M University in College Station, Texas, was awarded a grant in February 2003 to aid research on determinants of gregariousness in the spectral tarsier, Tarsius spectrum, on the island of Sulawesi, Indonesia. Gursky's goal was to determine the relative importance of predation in accounting for nightly variations in gregarious and nongregarious behavior exhibited by the spectral tarsier, a small nocturnal primate. During nine months at Tangkoko, Sulawesi, she conducted 214 half-night focal follows for nine groups that she trapped. She conducted a total of 66 experiments using wooden models of monitor lizards, 73 experiments using wooden models of civets, and 75 experiments using rubber and stuffed python models. When exposed to a rubber snake, the tarsiers mobbed the predator model approximately 42 percent of the time, alarm-called 32 percent of the time, and did nothing approximately 32 percent of the time. However, when the response of the tarsiers was broken down according to snake type and size (large vs. small), a very different picture emerged. When exposed to boas, the tarsiers mobbed 90 percent of the time, regardless of the size of the boa. Similarly, they mobbed approximately 75 percent of the time if the snake was large, even if it was not a boa. Thus, the tarsiers did not mob snakes that were not boas and/or were not large snakes. When exposed to a wooden monitor lizard, the tarsiers never mobbed, and for approximately 66 percent of the time they exhibited no response. The other 34 percent of the time was spent giving alarm calls. In contrast, when exposed to a wooden civet, the tarsiers occasionally mobbed (13 percent), frequently alarm-called (47 percent), and frequently exhibited no change in behavior (40 percent). The number of tarsiers mobbing the predator models varied from as few as three individuals to as many as ten, although it averaged six individuals.
Gursky, Sharon. 2006. Function of Snake Mobbing in Spectral Tarsiers. American Journal of Physical Anthropology 129(4):601-608.
Wallis, Dr. Neill Jansen, U. of Florida, Gainesville, FL - To aid research on 'Modeling Mobility, Exchange, and Recontextualization through Woodland Period Pottery in the Southeastern United States'
DR. NEILL J. WALLIS, University of Florida, Gainesville, Florida, received a grant in April 2011 to aid research on 'Modeling Mobility, Exchange, and Recontextualization through Woodland Period Pottery in the Southeastern United States.' This project identifies patterns of social interaction and life histories of objects across the 'Deep South' of the southeastern U.S. during the late Middle and Late Woodland periods (ca. AD 200-800) through integrated forms of materials analysis. Swift Creek Complicated Stamped vessels were used in a variety of social contexts and show definitive evidence of connections between sites in the impressions from carved wooden paddles used in vessel manufacture and decoration. Vessels, sometimes hundreds of kilometers apart, were stamped with the same wooden paddle. While matching designs could simply reflect patterns of mobility and exchange, the distribution of some vessels indicates purposeful delivery to particular sites and significant transformations of associated meanings. Through chemical (NAA) and mineralogical (petrographic) data from pottery and raw clays, a database of complicated stamped designs, and technofunctional data related to vessel form and function, this research outlines broad patterns in the production, use, and deposition of complicated stamped vessels. Taken together, these data constitute object biographies for exploring the functional and symbolic transmutability of vessels.
Davila, Dr. Arlene, New York U., New York, NY - To aid research on 'El Mall: Debating Class, Shopping Malls and Consumption among Bogota's New Middle Classes'
Preliminary abstract: In the past decade, there has been a revolution in the construction of shopping malls throughout Latin America accompanied by much boosterism about the area's supposedly growing middle class. My project examines what these coinciding developments suggest about the role shopping malls and consumption may be playing in shaping how issues of class and social inequality are increasingly defined in the context of larger neoliberalizing processes and new urban developments. I investigate these questions through ethnographic research on the Latin American shopping mall industry and on consumption cultures in Bogota, one of the Latin American cities that is experiencing the largest boom in shopping mall constructions in the area. I am especially interested in exploring these developments in relation to the growing boosterism in which many South American countries have been enveloped as 'success stories' rising in the midst of the global recession, and to changing definitions of class, specifically to the growth and consolidation of a 'new' Latin American middle class that is defined primarily around new forms of consumption. I am also interested in exploring how shopping malls are contributing to the privatization and transformation of space and affecting everyday life in the city. My research will include interviews with regional representatives of the Latin American chapter of (ICSC), and with Colombian developers, architects and market researchers involved in the shopping malls industry, and ethnographic research with middle class consumers and visitors to shoping malls in Bogota, Colombia. I seek to contribute to the anthropology of 'global middle clases' as well as to the growing literature on consumption, globalization and the politics of space.
Shen, Dr. Guanjun, Nanjing Normal U., Nanjing, China - To aid 'Multidisciplinary Studies on Modern Homo Sapiens Locality Ganqian Cave in Guangxi, Southern China'
Dr. GUANJUN SHEN, of Nanjing Normal University in Nanjing, China, was awarded a grant in December 2002 to aid multidisciplinary research on modern Homo sapiens from Guanqian Cave in Guangxi, southern China. Ganqian (Tubo) cave is known for its richly fossiliferous deposits, from which tens of thousands of mammalian fossils, including seventeen hominid teeth, had previously been collected. To find diagnostic fossils of late H. sapiens from a securely dated depositional sequence, excavations were conducted from April 7 to 27, 2003. Four two-meter-square test pits and a one-by-five-meter trench were explored, producing more than one thousand mammalian fossil teeth. Owing mainly to vandalism by local fossil hunters the year before, however, only two hominid teeth were recovered, both from the disturbed deposits. The remaining funds were then reallocated to the chronological study of other modern H. sapiens sites. At Zhangkou Cave in Yiliang County, Yunnan Province, unequivocal evidence has been found for the presence of humans in China during the much-discussed 'temporal gap' of 40,000 to 100,000 years ago. Moreover, results from Longtanshan Cave 1 in Chenggong County, Yunnan, were found to be in line with results from Shen's previous studies, further demonstrating that modern H. sapiens may have appeared in China as early as in western Asia and southern Africa. Meaningful dates have also been obtained from Qilinshan Cave in Laibin County, Guangxi. These results bear important implications for recent human evolution.
Shen, Guanjun, Jiankun Li, and Xueping Ji. 2005 U-Series Dating of Zhangkou Cave in Yiliang, Yunnan Province: Evidence for Human Activities in China during 40-100 ka. Chinese Science Bulletin 50(4):355-359.
Asouti, Dr. Eleni, U. of Liverpool, Liverpool, UK - To aid research on 'The Eastern Fertile Crescent Prehistory Project: The Evolution of Farming Economies in Northwest Zagros'
Preliminary abstract: The beginning of settled life, cultivation and herding transformed human societies. In the Fertile Crescent of Southwest Asia the transition from foraging to farming took place during the late Pleistocene and the early Holocene, a period of significant climate instability and accelerated sociocultural change region-wide. Nearly a century of archaeological research has established the main trajectories of the transition to food production in the Levant and Anatolia. However, outside these areas, the specific pathways through which foraging eventually gave way to mixed agropastoral economies remain little known. Furthermore, the impacts of climate and environmental change on the ecology and geographical distribution of the wild crop and animal progenitor species and the development of the domestication syndrome, have been largely overlooked. Agricultural origins were famously investigated for the first time in the Chamchamal valley of Iraqi Kurdistan in the 1940s and 50s by Robert and Linda Braidwood of the Chicago Oriental Institute. Sixty years on an international team led by archaeologists from the University of Liverpool returns to this area in order to document with the full suite of modern fieldwork and analytical techniques the co-evolution of climate and socio-cultural change, and plant and animal resource management strategies between ~20,000-8000 BC.
Panagopoulou, Dr. Eleni, Ephory of Palaeoanthropology - Speleology Archaeological Service, Athens, Greece - To aid research on 'Late Pleistocene of the Mani Peninsula, S. Greece: Palaeoanthropological Investigation'
DR. ELENI PANAGOPOULOU, of the Ephory of Palaeoanthropology-Speleology in Athens, Greece, was awarded funding in May 2002 to aid paleoanthropological research on the late Pleistocene of the Mani Peninsula, southern Greece. Current models of Neanderthal-modern human interactions and of the Middle to Upper Paleolithic transition are contradictory due to the uncertainties of dating methods and the lack of diagnostic human fossils associated with early Upper Paleolithic assemblages. Greece represents one of the routes by which modern humans might have entered the European continent, via the adjoining Near East. Excavations at the recently discovered cave complex of Lakonis, in southern Greece, produced an extensive record of hominid use from circa 100,000 years ago to 40,000 years ago. The bulk of the deposits was assigned to the Middle Paleolithic and contained extremely rich cultural remains and overlapping hearths. The lithic assemblages exhibited pronounced technological variability and morphological affinities with Balkan and eastern Mediterranean sequences. The faunal evidence indicated that hunting was the prime method of animal food extraction. A Neanderthal tooth associated with initial Upper Paleolithic assemblages, radiometrically dated to circa 40,000 years ago, was recovered, adding to the small number of taxonomically diagnostic human fossils from early Upper Paleolithic European contexts. The latter find indicated that, at least in southern Greece, the makers of early Upper Paleolithic assemblages were Neanderthals.
Panagopoulou, Eleni, P. Karkanas, G. Tsartsidou, E. Kotjabopoulou, K. Harvati, M. Ntinou. 2002. Late Pleistocene Archaeological and Fossil Human Evidence from Lakonis Cave, Southern Greece. Journal of Field Archaeology 29:323-349.