Posted by: Johan Normark | November 30, 2010

SAA and Nordic TAG

The sessions, dates, times and abstracts for my presentations at SAA (Society for American Archaeology) in Sacramento are these:

Session: Mesoamerican Settlement

31 March, 2011. 4:30 PM

Settlement dispersion as a strategy to cope with recurrent droughts (together with Justine Shaw)

A fluctuating settlement pattern in the Cochuah region in the Northern Maya Lowlands indicates a possible long-term strategy to deal with recurrent droughts. Settlement aggregation near permanent water sources occurred during periods with few droughts (the Classic period). Dispersion of settlement occurred during periods with droughts, most notably during the Terminal Classic period. This pattern differs from the Colonial period when such dispersion did not take place locally, probably due to the Spanish reducción program. This suggests that a Prehispanic organizational strategy to cope with recurrent droughts existed and that the Spanish presence discouraged the use of this strategy.

Session: Blogging Archaeology

2 April, 2011. 2:30 PM

Dealing with the public view of the Maya

The public view of the Maya is often affected by stereotypes, exoticism, and ethnocentrism. Nowhere is this clearer than in the 2012-phenomenon. While blogging about various parts of this phenomenon I have encountered everything from threats, dismissals on the grounds that I am biased because I am part of the academia but also positive feedback on the attempt to uncover frauds. Although my blog primarily is dedicated to Mayanist studies and archaeological theory, the 2012 part of the blog is most popular. How does that affect my choice of topics? Am I also feeding on the phenomenon that I criticize?

I will also participate in Nordic TAG (Theoretical Archaeological Group) held at Linnaeus University in the Swedish city of Kalmar (26-29th of April). I will at least participate in one session with more or less the same abstract as in “Blogging Archaeology” although I will expand the scope a bit. This is in Åsa Larsson and Lars Lundkvist’s session “Research and Outreach in the Digital Age.” I plan to participate in a second session as well but I’ll let you know which one in the future.

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