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UMMA Brown Bag: Mesoamerican Spinning Practices: A Macroregional Comparison & The Formative Maya Downtown: Excavations at Yaxuná, Yucatán in 2013

Thursday, October 10, 2013
12:00 AM
room 2009, Ruthven Museums Building

Mesoamerican Spinning Practices: A Macroregional Comparison

Lacey Carpenter

Doctoral candidate in Anthropology, University of Michigan

This talk presents the preliminary results of an inter-regional comparison spindle whorls collected from all over Mesomamerica. Spinning was an important craft activity throughout Mesoamerican history; however resource availability, differences in spinning techniques and thread styles, and the presence of different trade networks led to a variety of spinning tools. Here I look at the potential role of environmental, economic, and stylistic differences in Mesoamerican spindle whorls.

The Formative Maya Downtown: Excavations at Yaxuná, Yucatán in 2013

Chelsea Fisher

Doctoral student in Anthropology, University of Michigan

The Northern Maya Lowlands of Mexico's Yucatán Peninsula were once considered a cultural backwater, a mere receptacle of cultures that had grown up in the tropical jungles to the south. However, recent research of Formative Period contexts at sites in Yucatán is seriously undermining that model. Our recent excavations at one such site, Yaxuná, provide even more evidence for significant cultural activity in the north beginning in the Middle Formative Period. In this talk, I will discuss excavations of Yaxuná's "E-Group" and an early elite residence, as well as possible implications for how archaeologists think about the foundations of Maya civilization.

Speaker:
Lacey Carpenter & Chelsea Fisher, University of Michigan