AuthorKosakowsky, Laura J.
KeywordsCuello Site (Belize)
Indian pottery -- Belize.
Excavations (Archaeology) -- Belize.
Indians of Central America -- Belize -- Antiquities.
Mayas -- Antiquities.
Belize -- Antiquities.
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RightsCopyright © Arizona Board of Regents
Collection InformationThis title from the Anthropological Papers of the University of Arizona collection is made available by the University of Arizona Press and University of Arizona Libraries. If you have questions about this title, please contact the UA Press at http://www.uapress.arizona.edu/.
PublisherUniversity of Arizona Press (Tucson, AZ)
Description"This monograph adds important data on the development of Preclassic period ceramics in northern Belize."—American Antiquity"This book contributes to our understanding of early Maya society during an era that has only new been revealed."—The Chesopiean"Kosakowsky's book, produced in the clear, easy-to-read and well designed format . . . is a substantive contribution to Maya ceramic studies."—Journal of Latin American Studies
Table of ContentsPreface / Summary of the 1980 Excavation / Definition of Terms / Comparisons with the Cuello Ceramic Analysis by Duncan Pring / Type Descriptions (Swasey? Ceramic Sphere) / Type Descriptions (Xe? Ceramic Sphere) / Mortuary Vessels / Differentiating Features Between the Swasey and Bladen Ceramic Complexes / Type Descriptions (Mamom Ceramic Sphere) / Cocos Ceramic Complex / Type Descriptions (Chicanel Ceramic Sphere) / Mortuary Vessels / Early Ceramic Complexes in the New World / Ceramic Development at Cuello / References / Index / Abstract
Series/Report no.Anthropological Papers of the University of Arizona, No. 47
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Basal platform mounds at Chau Hiix, Belize: Evidence for ancient Maya social structure and cottage industry manufacturingCulbert, T. Patrick; Cook, Patricia Maria, 1965- (The University of Arizona., 1997)Traditional interpretations of ancient Maya social organization formulated more than half a century ago persist in current reconstructions. These proffer an ancient culture dichotomized into two distinct groups, elites and commoners, based on distinct social or economic characteristics. Recent research has shown that this theoretical dichotomy is unrealistic. A continuum in artifact assemblages and quantities, architectural sizes, styles and construction techniques, burial and cache contents, and other data sets indicate that interpretations identifying specific contexts as either elite or commoner are difficult to make. This has led some Mayanists to propose the existence of a middle class in ancient Maya society. This separate class is identifiable in the archaeological record by certain architectural units and limited access to restricted items. A multiple class reconstruction of ancient Maya culture more easily explains the diversity found in the archaeological record, and offers alternative models of Maya social, economic, and political systems. The Basal Platform Mound Project investigated a particular architectural type, the basal platform mound, that was hypothesized to represent the middle class. Excavations were undertaken at the site of Chau Hiix, in northern Belize, between 1993 and 1997. The four goals of the project were: (1) to identify and define a middle class within an ancient Maya community; (2) to determine the economic and social roles of this class within the ancient society at Chau Hiix during the Late Classic through Postclassic periods; (3) to determine the internal variability within this stratum as an indicator of the complexity of social systems among the ancient Maya; and (4) to determine if using the intersection of particular architectural styles and select artifact categories to identify social class is appropriate. This dissertation reports the results of the Basal Platform Mound Project, and offers a reconstruction of ancient Maya social, economic, and political trajectories that incorporates a middle class as a dynamic factor. A model is presented in which the middle class played a crucial role during the transition from the Late and Terminal Classic to the Postclassic periods, participating directly in the economic system as producers and perhaps as distributors. The flexibility and variability documented within this social group may be key to understanding the diverse developmental trajectories exhibited by different sites across the Maya Lowlands.
Maya Wetlands: Ecology and Pre-Hispanic Utilization of Wetlands in Northwestern BelizeCulbert, T. Patrick; Baker, Jeffrey Lee; Culbert, T. Patrick; Olsen, John W.; Davis, Owen K. (The University of Arizona., 2003)In this dissertation, I examine several issues related to the pre-hispanic utilization of wetlands by the Maya. Fourteen hypotheses associated with one model of wetland utilization, the Pohl-Bloom model are tested in this dissertation. The Pohl-Bloom model views the use of wetlands as being restricted in time and space, with wetlands only being utilized in the Preclassic along the Rio Hondo drainage. Rising sea levels caused a rise in the freshwater table, which ultimately forced the Maya to abandon their wetland fields at the end of the Preclassic. Patterns observed in wetlands outside of the Rio Hondo drainage are, according to this model, the remnant of natural features called gilgai. Before examining the Pohl-Bloom model several related aspects of tropical ecology and wetland ecology were examined, including deforestation and climatic change. Though deforestation can influence regional water tables, the deforestation in the Maya area appears to be to have been too early to have had any significant impact on wetland agriculture. Climate change is currently a major topic in Maya studies, with drought conceivably having an influence on wetland agriculture. The present examination of the climatic data, however, that there is not a good correlation between the timing of droughts and the timing of significant changes in Maya culture. Evidence is also presented that questions the reliability of the isotopic data that has been used to study climatic change in the Maya Lowlands. Examination of the Pohl-Bloom model resulted in rejection of all fourteen hypotheses. The available evidence on sea level changes indicates that water levels in the Preclassic were dropping, not rising, while there is no evidence for changes in the water table during the Preclassic. The environmental factors present in the Maya Lowlands are simply not capable of creating large rectilinear gilgai. Similarly, the shallow slopes and absence of the sorting of sediments by size can be used to rule erosion as a major factor in the creation of the wetland stratigraphies. Based upon the available evidence, it is argued that raised fields were utilized throughout northern Belize, having their most widespread distribution in the Late Classic Period.
Completing the Circle: Garifuna Pilgrimage Journeys from Belize to YurumeinButtram, Mance Edwin; Stoffle, Richard W. (The University of Arizona., 2007)This thesis explores the connections that the Garifuna indigenous group of Belize has with their former homeland, the island of St. Vincent. After emerging as a distinct ethnic group during the 17th century, the Garifuna were exiled from St. Vincent by British colonial rulers in 1797. For the Garifuna people, the connection to the island is more than historical. It is also spiritual. Interviews were conducted in July 2006 in Belize with members of the Garifuna community who have made the journey back to the island. In addition to presenting the results of those interviews, this thesis will also provide a history of the Garifuna people, describe some of the spiritual aspects of the culture, and a discussion of the current literature on pilgrimage.