Seafood and Civilization

                                                                                                                Pueblo Bonito
                                                                                                                Chaco Canyon
                                                                                                                 New Mexico



Instructor: Robin Fox (Anthropology)

Freshman Seminar: 090-101-56, Tuesday, 11.30 – 2.10, RAB 110a 

READINGS AND FILMS: All readings are on e-reserve except where indicated. The required readings are really quite short. I have included some extra material for those who want to pursue the ideas. The books by Benedict, Diamond, Moseley and Mann, for example, are worth reading in their entirety – later!

  1. The Orthodox Theory: The Anasazi Example
    • Readings:
      • Robin Fox, “The Origins of Social Complexity” from The Challenge of Anthropology (1994) (Read it all but pay particular attention to the introduction, conclusion, and the section “Chaco: The First Apartment Dwellers.”)

      • John Haywood, “What is Civilization” from Historical Atlas of Ancient Civilizations (2005)

      • (Try to read these before the first class.)

      • Jared Diamond, “The Ancient Ones: The Anasazi and their Neighbors” from Collapse: How Societies Choose to Fail or Succeed(2005)
    • Optional: further information
      • Jared Diamond, “Farmer Power” and “To Farm or not to Farm” and “From Egalitarianism to Kleptocracy” in Guns, Germs and Steel: The Fates of Human Societies (1997) (not on reserve: some diagrams and tables will be handed out in class)

    • Film: The Chaco Legacy (narrator Stacy Keach) and Ancient America: The Southwest (Odyssey)

    • Pueblo Indians and the Northwest Coast
      • Readings:
        • Robin Fox as above: (section on “The Southwestern Desert.”)

        • Douglas Schwartz , “Origins of the Great Southwestern Pueblos” from Anthronotes (28:1, 2007, AMNH)

        • Philip Drucker, “Society” from Indians of the Northwest Coast (1955)

        • Optional: further information
        • Ruth Benedict, “The Northwest Coast of America” in Patterns of Culture (1934) (also “The Pueblos of New Mexico” – not on e-reserve.)

        • Robin Fox: sections on Cochiti Pueblo NM, from Participant Observer (2004) – class handout
      • Film: Ancient America: The Northwest (Odyssey) and In the Land of the War Canoes (Curtis, 1914).

      • The Calusa of Southwest Florida 

      • Readings

        • Darcie A. McMahon and William H. Marquardt, “The Fishing Heritage” “The Calusa” “Calusa Architecture and Engineering” and “The Calusa Legacy” from The Calusa and their Legacy (2004) (This seems like a lot but most of the pages are illustrations, maps etc. There are about fifteen pages of text.)

        • Robin Fox as above (section on “Calusa: The Seashell Kingdom”)
        • Optional: further information:
          • William H. Marquardt, “The Emergence and Decline of the Calusa” from Societies in Eclipse: Archaeology of the Eastern Woodland Indians, (2001.)
        • Film: The Domain of the Calusa (Florida Museum of Natural History

        • The Norte Chico of Peru
          • Readings:
            • Charles C. Mann, “Cotton (or Anchovies) and Maize” from 1491: New Revelations of the Americas before Columbus (2005) (pp.174-189)

            • Charles C. Mann, “Oldest Civilization in the Americas Revealed” in Science, vol. 307:5706, 34. 2005 (Not on e-reserve: will email to you)

            • Napoleon Chagnon: “Hallucinogenic Snuff” excerpts from Yanomamo: The Last Days of Eden (1992)

            • The Wikipedia entry on “Norte Chico Civilization” is quite good)

            • Optional: further information:
            • Michael E. Moseley, “The Preceramic Foundations of Civilization” in The Incas and their Ancestors: The Archaeology of Peru(2001) (not on e-reserve)

            • Michael E. Moseley, The Maritime Foundations of Andean Civilization (1975) (The classic source - not on e-reserve)

            • Film: The Real Temple of Doom (The History Channel: Digging for the Truth)

          • Return to Chaco. The Maya Achievement. Roundup.

          • Read – rest of Diamond chapter “The Ancient Ones” and “The Maya Collapses” in Collapse, and rest of Mann chapter in 1491 (on origins of maize).

    • Films:
      • The Mystery of Chaco Canyon (narrated by Robert Redford)

      • Apocalypto (excerpts – directed by Mel Gibson)

      • Essay, due at final meeting: John Hayward writes: “Where intensive agriculture is not possible, civilizations cannot arise.” Comment on this in view of what you have learned in the course.
Kwakiutl Long House and Totem Pole

Zuni Kachina Dancers

Calusa Feline-human figure

Caral - as old as the pyramids

Mayan Temple. Chchen Itza

Pueblo Bonito: a reconstruction