Crossing the Borders: New Methods and Techniques in the Study of Archaeology Materials from the Caribbean / Edition 2

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Explores the application of a selected number of newly emerging methods and techniques.
During the past few decades, Caribbean scholars on both sides of the Atlantic have increasingly developed and employed new methods and techniques for the study of archaeological materials. The aim of earlier research in the Caribbean was mainly to define typologies on the basis of pottery and lithic assemblages leading to the establishment of chronological charts for the region, and it was not until the 1980s that the use of technological and functional analyses of artifacts became widespread. The 1990s saw a veritable boom in this field, introducing innovative methods and techniques for analyzing artifacts and human skeletal remains. Innovative approaches included microscopic use-wear analysis, starch residue and phytolith analysis, stable isotope analysis, experimental research, ethnoarchaeological studies, geochemical analyses, and DNA studies. 
The purpose of this volume is to describe new methods and techniques in the study of archaeological materials from the Caribbean and to assess possible avenues of mutual benefit and integration. Exploring the advantages and disadvantages in the application of a selected number of newly emerging methods and techniques, each of these approaches is illustrated by a case study. These studies benefited from a diverse array of experience and the international background of the researchers from Canada, the Netherlands, Cuba, Puerto Rico, Martinique, Italy, Mexico, Dominican Republic, England, and the United States who are integral members of the archaeological community of the Caribbean. A background to the study of archaeological materials in the Caribbean since the 1930s is provided in order to contextualize the latest developments in this field.   

Benoît Bérard, Mathijs Booden, Iris Briels, Jago Cooper, Alfredo Coppa, Andrea Cucina, Gareth Davies ,Hylke de Jong, Christy de Mille, Corinne L. Hofman, Menno L. P. Hoogland, Charlene Dixon Hutcheson, Daan Isendoorn, Loe Jacobs, William F. Keegan, Harold J. Kelly, Sebastiaan Knippenberg, Yvonne M. J. Lammers-Keijsers,Fernando Luna Calderón, Marcos Martinón-Torres, Lee A. Newsom, Channah Nieuwenhuis José R. Oliver,Jaime R. Pagán Jiménez, Raphaël G. A. M. Panhuysen, Roberto Rodríguez Suárez, Glenis Tavarez María, Michael Turney, Roberto Valcárcel Rojas, Annelou L. van Gijn,Rita Vargiu,Tamara Varney, Johannes Zijlstra

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
". . . The case studies do an ecellent job of demonstrating the fundamental role that archaeometry now plays in Caribbean archaeology andn illustrate the diversity of experience and backgrounds of the researchers. . . . Crossing the Borders ushers Caribbean archaeology into a new phase. . . . Well-written and illustrated, the book is a showcase of some of the most interesting and thoughtful archaeological reserach underway in the Caribbean."--New West Indian Guide

"Individual studies discuss the advantages and disadvantages of specific, newly created techniques, and each new approach is exemplified with a case study. A straightforward narrative historical background of the study of Caribbean archaeological materials is also provided, for quick and easy reference. An index enhances this extensively researched, in-depth, up-to-date guide, enthusiastically recommended for Caribbean studies and college library shelves."
—Midwest Book Review

"Crossing the Borders is an impressive collection of works on a wide range of archaeometric techniques used in the Caribbean. But what makes this book really cross borders is the list of contributors that includes researchers from at least seven countries representing four different languages and three continents. Thus, this book is truly breaking political, social, geographic, as well as, academic barriers."

Institute for Archaeological Research

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780817315856
  • Publisher: University of Alabama Press
  • Publication date: 3/28/2008
  • Series: Caribbean Archaeology and Ethnohistory Series
  • Edition description: 1st Edition
  • Edition number: 2
  • Pages: 432
  • Product dimensions: 6.13 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 1.00 (d)

Meet the Author

Corinne L. Hofman, Menno L. P. Hoogland, and Annelou L. van Gijn, are all on the Faculty of Archaeology, Leiden University, The Netherlands.

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Table of Contents

List of Illustrations     ix
Crossing Disciplinary Boundaries and National Borders: New Methods and Techniques in the Study of Archaeological Materials from the Caribbean   Corinne L. Hofman   Menno L. P. Hoogland   Annelou L. van Gijn     1
Provenance Studies
In Tuneful Threefold: Combining Conventional Archaeological Methods, Archaeometric Techniques, and Ethnoarchaeological Research in the Study of Precolonial Pottery of the Caribbean   Corinne L. Hofman   A. J. Daan Isendoorn   Mathijs A. Booden   Loe F. H. C. Jacobs     21
American Gold and European Brass: Metal Objects and Indigenous Values in the Cemetery of El Chorro de Maita, Cuba   Jago Cooper   Marcos Martinon-Torres   Roberto Valcarcel Rojas     34
Chert Sourcing in the Northern Lesser Antilles: The Use of Geochemical Techniques in Discriminating Chert Materials   Sebastiaan Knippenberg   Johannes J. P. Zijlstra     43
Functional Studies of Artifacts
A New Material to View the Past: Dental Alginate Molds of Friable Artifacts   Charlene Dixon Hutcheson     69
Saladoid Lapidary Technology: New Methods for Investigating Stone Bead Drilling Techniques   Christy de Mille   Tamara Varney   Michael Turney     78
Lithic Technology: A Way to More Complex Diversity in CaribbeanArchaeology   Benoit Berard     90
Tool Use and Technological Choices: An Integral Approach toward Functional Analysis of Caribbean Tool Assemblages   Annelou L. van Gijn   Yvonne Lammers-Keijsers   Iris Briels     101
Understanding the Function of Coral Tools from Anse a la Gourde: An Experimental Approach   Harold J. Kelly   Annelou L. van Gijn     115
The Significance of Wear and Residue Studies: An Example from Plum Piece, Saba   Channah J. Nieuwenhuis     125
Starch Residues on Lithic Artifacts from Two Contrasting Contexts in Northwestern Puerto Rico: Los Muertos Cave and Vega de Nelo Vargas Farmstead   Jaime R. Pagan Jimenez   Jose R. Oliver     137
The Buren in Precolonial Cuban Archaeology: New Information Regarding the Use of Plants and Ceramic Griddles during the Late Ceramic Age of Eastern Cuba Gathered through Starch Analysis   Roberto Rodriguez Suarez   Jaime R. Pagan Jimenez     159
New Trends in Paleobotanical and Paleo-Osteological Research
Caribbean Paleoethnobotany: Present Status and New Horizons (Understanding the Evolution of an Indigenous Ethnobotany)   Lee A. Newsom     173
New Evidence of Two Different Migratory Waves in the Circum-Caribbean Area during the Pre-Columbian Period from the Analysis of Dental Morphological Traits   Alfredo Coppa    Andrea Cucina   Menno L. P. Hoogland   Michaela Lucci   Fernando Luna Calderon   Raphael G. A. M. Panhuysen   Glenis Tavarez Maria   Roberto Valcarcel Rojas   Rita Vargiu     195
Tracing Human Mobility with [superscript 87]Sr/[superscript 86]Sr at Anse a la Gourde, Guadeloupe   Mathijs A. Booden   Raphael G. A. M. Panhuysen   Menno L. P. Hoogland   Hylke N. de Jong   Gareth R. Davies   Corinne L. Hofman     214
Epilogue: The Correct Answer Requires the Right Question (and the Technology to Back It Up)   William F. Keegan     226
References Cited     233
Contributors     285
Index     291
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