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Harris, Lucille Elizabeth

Grant Type
Hunt Postdoctoral Fellowship
Status
Completed Grant
Approve Date
Project Title
Harris, Dr. Lucille Elizabeth, Independent Scholar, Boise, ID - To aid research and writing on 'Families, Bands, and the Social Construction of Leadership in Complex Hunter-Gatherer Villages on the Northern Plateau' - Hunt Postdoctoral Fellowship

DR. LUCILLE HARRIS, an independent scholar from Boise, Idaho, was awarded a Hunt Postdoctoral Fellowship in October 2013 to aid research and writing on 'Families, Bands, and the Social Construction of Leadership in Complex Hunter-Gatherer Villages on the Northern Plateau.' Archaeological investigations into how and why socioeconomic and sociopolitical inequality emerge in hunting and gathering societies have been one of the most compelling research topics in anthropological archaeology during the last forty years. However, in the last decade there has been growing movement away from historically accepted accounts that emphasize economic drivers and explicitly hierarchical sociopolitical structures to perspectives that envision a multiplicity of complexities, encompassing distributed and parallel power structures. This book contributes to this growing dialogue through an in-depth case study of the ethnology and archaeology of the Northern Interior Plateau of Northwestern North America. The text moves between ethnologic data which describe four different patterns of nonhierarchical political organization that existed among Northern Interior Salish societies in the first half of the 19th century and an examination of the formation and breakup of archaeologically documented aggregated villages in the Mid-Fraser region of British Columbia, ca. 2000-600 cal. BP. Using observed patterning in material correlates associated with the different ethnologically described sociopolitical systems, an argument is constructed for understanding the formation and breakup of the archaeological village sites as a function of a dialectic tension that existed between family autonomy and band-level political authority.