SMITI NATHAN STAUDT, then a graduate student at New York University, New York, New York, was awarded a grant in October 2015 to aid research on 'Ingenuity in the Oasis: An Examination of Early Bronze Age Agricultural Communities in Oman,' supervised by Dr. Rita Wright. This project will investigate the socio-economic foundations of oasis communities during the Early Bronze Age (EBA, ca. 3100BCE - 2000BCE) in southeastern Arabia. These relatively small-scale communities demonstrate strategic organizational and subsistence choices in extreme environments and climates that led to the establishment of widespread oasis agriculture communities across the landscape. This project will operate as a contextualized study of settlement patterning and plant cultivation and usage amongst EBA oasis communities in southeastern Arabia through the integration of geospatial, ethnoarchaeological, and archaeobotanical analyses. Decision-making strategies of EBA inhabitants will be contextualized and analyzed using niche construction frameworks that focus on humans as agents of cultural change. This project will examine how EBA communities organized themselves, practiced plant cultivation, strategized decision-making, and, thus, contributed to the maintenance and spread of oasis agriculture communities, which provided the socio-economic foundations for development of complexity in southeastern Arabia.
Dissertation Fieldwork Grant
New York U.
Staudt, Smiti Nathan, New York U., New York, NY - To aid research on 'Ingenuity in the Oasis: An Examination of Early Bronze Age Agricultural Communities in Oman,' supervised by Dr. Rita Wright