Volume 62, Number 1, Abstracts

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Collective Violence and the Manipulation of Social Boundaries

Shannon A. Novak
Department of Anthropology, Idaho State University

Lars Rodseth
Department of Anthropology, University of Utah

The concept of social memory has generated a large literature, much of which focuses on the trauma of collective violence. Yet we need to know more about how narratives of violent and traumatic events influence social loyalties and how such narratives are managed or manipulated. Here we focus on the 1857 Mountain Meadows massacre, in which some 120 Arkansas emigrants were murdered in southwestern Utah. Our aim is not to establish “what really happened” at Mountain Meadows, but to examine the memory politics of the case—the many stories of the massacre, the ways they have been told, and their use as reference points in drawing or redrawing social boundaries. Our analysis highlights the activities of schoolteachers and other rural intellectuals in shaping the trauma process. This process, we argue, is based on an expanding sense of victimization as communicated in narratives of social violence and suffering.

LAS HALDAS: An Expanding Initial Period Polity of Coastal Peru

Shelia Pozorski and Thomas Pozorski
Department of Psychology and Anthropology, University of Texas–Pan American

The site of Las Haldas is the largest and most complex early Peruvian coastal site, and its location, overlooking the ocean and 20 km or more from arable land, makes it enigmatic. Building on the work of Peruvian, French, Japanese, and American archaeologists since the 1950s, our excavations within the Casma Valley area document the development of a substantial Initial period (2150–1000 cal BC) polity at Las Haldas that expanded inland as the Sechín Alto polity, based within the valley, declined. The Las Haldas polity responded to the weakened Sechín Alto polity and its legacy by establishing administrative satellites within the Casma Valley. Placement of one such structure on the main Sechín Alto mound clearly reflects an effort to tangibly demonstrate dominance of the newly invigorated Las Haldas polity over the recently weakened Sechín Alto polity that had so effectively
dominated the Casma Valley area for centuries.


Lidio M. Valdez
Department of Anthropology, University of Victoria

When the Spaniards marched into the Inka capital of Cuzco in 1533, chicha (maize beer) was the common, everyday beverage within the vast Inka empire. Recent archaeological research carried out at Marayniyoq, a Middle Horizon Wari site in the Ayacucho Valley in central Peru, uncovered a series of cut stones with hollow depressions. Several features of these artifacts indicate that they functioned as grinding stones. Confirming this observation is the finding in association with the cut stones of several rocker grinders or milling stones, which are the active elements of grinding equipment. While this evidence convincingly indicates that grinding was an important activity at the site, fieldwork also uncovered a large number of large vessels. Most of these vessels had been broken and then repaired in the distant past, a fact which suggests that they were used for storing dry products that perhaps were processed by means of the grinding stones. The evidence from Marayniyoq is very similar to artifacts associated with maize beer production during (later) Inka times, strongly indicating that during the Middle Horizon maize beer appears to have been produced in a fashion very similar to that of the Inka. At the same time, this evidence suggests that maize beer distribution was a function of the state, perhaps as part of reciprocal obligations between elites and commoners.

INVEST IN PROSOCIAL BEHAVIOR: A Study in the Bolivian Amazon

Victoria Reyes-Garcia
ICREA-ICTA, Universitat Autňnoma de Barceloan
Sustainable International Development Program, Heller School for Social Policy and Management, Brandeis University

Ricardo Godoy, Vincent Vadez, Tomás Huanca
Sustainable International Development Program, Heller School for Social Policy and Management, Brandeis University

William R. Leonard
Department of Anthropology, Northwestern University

Ethnographic evidence, empirical research, and results of experimental studies suggest that people across cultures invest in prosocial behavior, but little research addresses the relative importance of personal versus group incentives to invest in prosocial behavior. We estimate the relative weight of personal and group incentives for households to invest in prosocial behavior using two waves of panel data (2001 and 2002) from ca. 350 Tsimane’ Amerindians, a foraging-farming society in the Bolivian Amazon. We found that some personal incentives bore a significant association with household decisions to display prosocial behavior. Consistent with previous research, we found that investments in prosocial behavior first rise and then decline with age, and that cash income bore a positive association with investments in prosocial behavior. We found no evidence that group incentives were associated with personal investments in prosocial behavior once we controlled for fixed attributes of villages, but those fixed attributes did explain a significant share of the variation in the data.


Leslie E. Sponsel: Human Rights: The Scholar as Activist, Carole Nagengast and Carlos G. Vélez-Ibáñez, eds.

Cynthia Keppley Mahmood: The Performance of Human Rights in Morocco, by Susan Slyomovics

Mary H. Moran: Farmers and Townspeople in a Changing Nigeria: Abakaliki during Colonial Times, by Simon Ottenberg

Lara Deeb: Contesting Rituals: Islam and Practices of Identity-Making, Pamela J. Stewart and Andrew Strathern, eds.

Julia Meredith Hess: High Frontiers: Dolpo and the Changing World of Himalayan Pastoralists, by Kenneth M. Bauer

Thomas F. Thornton: Development and Local Knowledge: New Approaches to Issues in Natural Resources Management, Conservation, and Agriculture, Alan Bicker, Paul Sillitoe, and Johan Pottier, eds.

Cymene Howe: What’s Love Got To Do With It? by Denise Brennan

Judith A. Brouchoff: The Mexican Aristocracy: An Expressive Ethnography, 1910–2000, by Hugo G. Nutini

Howard Campbell: Tepoztlán and the Transformation of the Mexican State, by JoAnn Martin

Beverly R. Singer: Navajo and Photography: A Critical History of the Representation of an American People, by James C. Faris

Jeffrey D. Anderson: Ordeal of Change: The Southern Utes and Their Neighbors, by Frances Leon Quintana

Nobuhiro Kishigami: The Whales, They Give Themselves: Conversations with Harry Brower, Sr., Karen Brewster, ed.

Regna Darnell: Significant Others: Interpersonal and Professional Commitments in Anthropology, Richard Handler, ed.

Karen Stocker: Language, Literacy, and Power in Schooling, Teresa L. McCarty, ed.

James Collins: Colormute: Race Talk Dilemmas in an American School, by Mica Pollock

Sonia Ragir: Evolution of Communication Systems: A Comparative Approach, D. Kimbrough Oller and Ulrike Griebel, eds.

Steven W. Gangestad: Adapting Minds: Evolutionary Psychology and the Persistent Quest for Human Nature, by David J. Buller

Debra Komar: Interacting with the Dead: Perspectives on Mortuary Archaeology for the New Millenium, Gordon F. M. Rakita, Jane E. Buikstra, Lane A. Beck, and Sloan R. Williams, eds.

Pam J. Crabtree: Diet and Health in Past Animal Populations: Current Research and Future Directions, J. Davies, M. Fabis?, I. Mainland, M. Richards, and R. Thomas, eds.

Natalie D. Munro: Zooarchaeology and Conservation Biology, R. Lee Lyman and Kenneth P. Cannon, eds.

Amber L. Johnson: Archaeology as a Process: Processualism and Its Progeny, Michael J. O’Brien, R. Lee Lyman, and Michael B. Schiffer, eds.

Lawrence G. Straus: Hauterive-Champréveyres et Neuchâtel-Monruz. Témoins d’Implantations Magdaléniennes et Aziliennes sur la Rive Nord du Lac de Neuchâtel, by Denise Leesch, Marie-Isabelle Cattin, and Werner Müller

Lawrence G. Straus: Hunters in a Changing World. Environment and Archaeology of the Pleistocene-Holocene Transition (ca. 11000–9000 BC) in Northern Central Europe, Thomas Terberger and Berit V. Eriksen, eds. .149

Peter Bogucki: Neolithic Farming in Central Europe: An Archaeobotanical Study of Crop Husbandry Practices, by Amy Bogaard

Robert McC. Adams: Myths of the Archaic State: Evolution of the Earliest Cities, States, and Civilizations, by Norman Yoffee

Peter M. Day: Reports on the Vrokastro Area, Eastern Crete. Volume 2: The Settlement History of the Vrokastro Area and Related Studies, by Barbara J. Hayden

Christopher Ehret: African Connections: Archaeological Perspectives on Africa and the Wider World, by Peter Mitchell

Brian S. Bauer: An Inca Account of the Conquest of Peru, by Titu Cusi Yupanqui, Ralph Bauer, eds.

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