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Gregorio De Souza, Jonas

Grant Type
Dissertation Fieldwork Grant
Insitutional Affiliation
Exeter U.
Status
Completed Grant
Approve Date
Project Title
Gregorio De Souza, Dr. Jonas, U. of Exeter, Exeter, UK - To aid research on 'House Architecture and Community Organization: Exploring Alternative Pathways to Complexity in the Southern Brazilian Highlands,' supervised by Dr. Jose Iriarte

DR. JONAS GREGORIO DE SOUZA, University of Exeter, Exeter, United Kingdom, was awarded funding in April 2015 to aid research on 'House Architecture and Community Organization: Exploring Alternative Pathways to Complexity in the Southern Brazilian Highlands,' supervised by Dr. Jose Iriarte. The aim of the project was to understand the function of large-scale domestic architecture in pit house villages of the Taquara/ltarare Tradition, Southern Brazilian Highlands, and their role in the emergence of complex societies in the region. The excavations at site Valmor Baggio -- a large, dense and well-planned pit house settlement -- revealed significant differences between structures of distinct sizes, as well as between different sectors of the site. The inner precinct, located on a hilltop, exhibits formal architecture revolving around the oversized House 1, with 16m diameter and an original depth of 4m. The results of the excavations show that House 1 differs from other structures not only in its size and privileged location, but also in the presence of fine ceramics, rites of cyclical conflagration and entombment, and a long, uninterrupted occupation spanning three centuries. Dwellers of oversized House 1 consolidated the structure as a permanent reference in the community, periodically raising new floors on top of old ones, providing links with the history of the house and past generations. The results of the project show an interplay of corporate and aggrandizing strategies in the origin of complex societies in the Southern Brazilian Highlands.