And the Giants Keep Singing: Comcaac Anthropology of Meaningful Places
AdvisorFish, Suzanne K.
Sheridan, Thomas E.
Committee ChairFish, Suzanne K.
Sheridan, Thomas E.
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PublisherThe University of Arizona.
RightsCopyright © is held by the author. Digital access to this material is made possible by the University Libraries, University of Arizona. Further transmission, reproduction or presentation (such as public display or performance) of protected items is prohibited except with permission of the author.
AbstractIn collaboration with members of the Comcaac (Seri Indians) community of the central coast of Sonora, Mexico, it has been possible to join oral historical evidence with archaeological, ethnographic, and documentary data towards a better understanding of the Comcaac past and its continuity into the present. Collaborative research creates opportunities for innovative frameworks and methodologies that can integrate diverse historical narratives while responding to Comcaac perspectives and desires. The research approach emphasizes the historical and social context-dependent dialectical nature of material culture and its acquired meaning through social practice. It defines a cultural landscape as an environmental setting that is simultaneously the medium for, and the outcome of, social action. The Comcaac cultural landscape is tied to history, culture, and society, where places localize, commemorate, and transmit traditional knowledge derived from the people's historical memory that is anchored to the land. This study formally, spatially and temporally documented a vast range of social practices that constructed and continues to construct the Comcaac cultural landscape. In tandem with standard archaeological survey techniques, we developed a distinctive methodology for simultaneously recording oral histories and traditions along successive landscape segments. This project improves the discipline of anthropology through methodological advances to build theory that better understands object and people relationships in the past and today. The results not only exemplify a productive collaboration endeavor but also enhance archaeological knowledge of the poorly known Comcaac region.
Degree ProgramGraduate College