Archeology

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What is archeology

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189 Terms

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What is archeology

Study of human remains through material remains

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2 branches of archeology

Historical archeology, prehistoric archeology

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Why study archeology

Past cultures

Past ways of life

People and environment (how we shaped it and it shaped us)

Origins of species and institutions (ex when did gender roles or cities start)

How has society changed over time

Forgotten people

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Elements of archeology

Methodology

Material remains

Interpretation

The human past

Anthropological questions

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Ancient turning points

Emergence of human behavior

Development of agriculture

rise of inequalities, cities, and states

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Artifact

A portable object use made by or altered by humans

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Features

Non portable features made by or altered by humans

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Ecofacts

plants, animals, sediments, etc. that result from human activity

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Human remains

Remains of a human left behind not an ecofact

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Site

Cluster of artifacts, features, ecofacts, or human remains where humans were gathered

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Region

Group of sits in their environmental setting

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Context

Where remains are found and what they are associated with

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Taphonomy

The process of site formation

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Cultural process

The formation of sites done by humans

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What are the cultural processes

Acquisition

Manufacturing

Use/consumption

Deposition

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16

Stratigraphy

Deposition over time

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Midden

Trash deposition left behind by humans

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Natural transformation after deposition

Natural processes destroy sites

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Analogy

The unknown function of something is inferred from know based

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Unilinear evolution

Human processes observed in one setting may have happened somewhere else

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Specific anlogy

Compared to a better-known time period in the same cultural tradition

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General analogy

Broad comparison across cultural traditions

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Ethnography

Archeologist interpretation of what people where doing

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Ethnohistory

Writings about a culture that usually hold some sort of bias

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Ethnoarchaeology

Archeologist documenting the material culture of living people

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Experimental archeology

Controlled replication of artifacts or activities

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Speculative phase

A period when people started to become interested in past artifacts. It was more about how cool the objects were and not their context

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Thomas Jefferson

First scientific excavation done where he correctly identified the purpose of a mound

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What year was the beginning of archeology

1850

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Who created the three age system

Christian Thomsen

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Three ages

Stone age, bronze age, Iron age

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What improved during the beginning of archeology era

Better excavation and record-keeping

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Sir Charles Lyell

Wrote principles of geology and established Uniformitarianism

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Uniformitarianism

The process that shaped the earth are the same as today (erosion) proved the earth is really old

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Charles Darwin

Proposed that humans may have evolved from apes so we were able to recognize neanderthals and such as pre-humans

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Lewis Henry Morgan

Proposed unilinear evolution

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Unilinear evolution

All societies pass through the same stages of development

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Lewis Henry Morgans proposed stages of Unilinear evolution

Savagery, barbarianism civilization

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Culture historical years

1920-60

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Franz boas

Proposed Cultural relativism

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Cultural relativism

No universal standard for judging human progress and each culture is a product of its own historical circumstances

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Functionalism

Culture is designed to fulfill important functions and meet human needs

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Cultural ecology

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Field walking

Identity sites by walking around

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Limitations of field walking

Not visible ground, do not have permission to walk, rough terrain

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Shovel testing

Identifying sites with bad surface visibility but digging small holes

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Remote sensing

Identifying sites by air

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Surface collection

Looking for artifacts and collecting them on surface

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Mapping

Mapping any sites found

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Subsurface sampling

Minimally invasive ways to see under the surface

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Geological methods

Radar, soil resistance, magnetometry to see whats underground

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Excavation

Digging fueled by research question takes a lot of time and resources

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Test excavation

Digging a small hole to see whats going on

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Why do they dig in squares

So they can keep track of distance everything is from one another

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Flogtation

Passing dirt through water to separate any artifacts

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Screening

Finding the little stuff in the dirt

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Judgement sampling

Seek out data directly related to your research question

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Random sampling

Seek out data that is representative of the population

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Seriation

Dating something based on its style of when it occurred more frequently

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Radio potassium dating

dates rocks based on how much k-ar 2 billion to 200,000 years ago

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Radio carbon dating

Dates organic material based on how much c-14 decayed to c-12 40,00-300 years ago

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dendrochronology

Dating something based on when the wood used to date it was cut down

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Australopithecine

Apes that were bipedal about 4-1 mya

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Early homo

2.75-1.6 mya were the first tool makers

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Oldowan tools

First tools used by early homo were extremely primitive and just were stones

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Oldovai gorge

1.8 mya In Tanzania has bones left by humans that showed cut marks likely done by humans batching animals

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Homo erectus

First humans to have human proportions. They had shorter arms, longer legs to the torso, and wider hips for larger heads. Meat eaters. Likely the first to leave Africa. Likely had fire.

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acheulean tools

Hand axes used by homo eretus

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Ologesaile

Kenya, lots of hand axes and bones

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Neanderthals

Europe, big game hunters used natural rock shelters, buried their dead, cared for old sick members of groups, used Mousterian tools

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Mousterian tools

Used by neanderthals and where more complex, they typically stones attached to sticks used to hunt big game

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Anatomically modern homo sapiens

In Africa by at least 300 kya middle east as early as 100 kya. Exhibited early signs of behavioral complexity.

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Behavioral complexity of anatomically modern homo sapiens

Wide range of prey, used water resources, dog domestication, built shelters, made clothing, water crafts, music, art, possibly religion.

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Pleistocene

Ice age to 10,000 BC where the earth was cold

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Holocene

After 9,000 BC when the earth was getting warmer

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Mesolithic

Eurasia/Africa during Holocene 9,000-3,500 BC

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Archaic

Americas in holocene 8000-1,500 BC

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Upper Paleolithic

Eurasia/Africa in the Pleistocene

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paleoindian

Americas in Pleistocene

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Dolni Vestonich

Czech Republic, Paleolithic period. Salt licks near the site to attract animals. A large number of mammoth bones and a few plant fragments. About 5 larger dwellings complex ritual life.

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Complex rituals at Dolni Vestonich

Figures, engravings, baskets, mystery triple burial

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Cave sites of Spain and France

A lot of cave paintings that likely were shows shown under torch light.

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Peopling of Australia

There was a water gap so they must have made boats to get from Asia and Australia.

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Lake Mungo

Australia 38-24,000 BC. Had mungo man and woman, the first evidence of cremation. Evidence they used water resources

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Paleodians

People of the Americas in the late Pleistocene

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People of the Americas

They walked across the land bridge from Asia to Alaska and then likely took boats down to the west coast of Canada. To America.

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Why do we think they took boats

They found Clovis culture that predated when people would have been able to walk through Canada

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Monte Verde

Chile 12,000 BC widespread clovis culture

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Clovis Culture

Sharp points that were used for killing big game

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Peopling of the pacific

Took boats to find tiny islands in the pacific. Boats carried lots of people for weeks, Expert knowledge of the stars

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Megafauna extinction

Due to overhunting and climate change

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Mesolithic/Archaic adaptations

People exploited smaller areas more intensely, diverse resource bases, processing and storage of specific local resources.

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Mesolithic/Archaic tools

Fish hooks and traps, bows, mortars, blades, microliths.

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Mesolithic/Archaic lifeway

Cemeteries and evidence of violence

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Carrier mills

Illinois 4000-3000 BC Fish hooks, grinders, jewelry for males

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Ice cores

Used to study past environment shows atmospheric composition in the past

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Tree ring series

Used to study past environment shows droughts

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Who left Africa

Homo Sapiens

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Formative period

When humans in the Americas started to form more permanent settlements

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Multiple independent origins of agriculture

Agriculture arose in various different parts throughout the world despite having no contact with one another

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