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Constructing Translocal Identities in Neolithic Northwestern China: Insights from Ceramic Analysis

Dr. Andrew Womack, Assistant Professor, Department of Anthropology and Department of Asian Studies, Furman University
Friday, February 17, 2023
12:00-1:00 PM
Over the last century archaeologists have investigated late Neolithic and Bronze Age interaction networks spanning Eurasia, which in the east connected steppe pastoralists with farming communities in what is now northwestern China. While much attention has focused on the adoption and impact of technologies and domesticates from western Asia in eastern Asia, few models have been put forth to explain how and why these networks formed and functioned. What research has been done on this topic has generally focused on analysis of ceramics and metal objects to suggest long-distance movement of commodities between broad geographic regions. Here I suggest that to understand long-distance interactions, we first need to understand the movements of people and goods at the site-specific level, which I theorize using the concept of translocality. This talk will draw on recent petrographic analysis of ceramic vessels from the Tao River Valley of Gansu Province as well as collections from across northwestern China in the Museum of Far Eastern Antiquities in Stockholm, Sweden. My results demonstrate that localized interaction was occurring on a regular basis among settlements in the Tao River Valley, and was likely a key aspect of identity formation across a much wider region.
Building: Off Campus Location
Location: Virtual
Event Link:
Event Type: Lecture / Discussion
Tags: Anthropology, Archaeology
Source: Happening @ Michigan from Museum of Anthropological Archaeology