Causes and Effects: Explaining Long Term Culture Change in the Southwest
Organizers: Cynthia Herhahn and Ann Ramenofsky
The deep archaeological record in the Southwest provides a unique opportunity for creating powerful explanations of the long-term change across the region. To create such explanations requires consideration of cause. Although many causes are possible, in the thirteenth biennial Southwest Symposium, we focus on three: historical ecology, demography, and movement ( whether of people, material, or ideas). We consider the role of each variable in explanation, explore the tensions and intersections among them, and consider how inferences deriving from the cross fertilization of cause can produce more fulsome explanations of some segment of the past.
The first session establishes the framework for all other papers. This session combines elements of a panel discussion with the formality of presentation. Symposium organizers will introduce the discussion. Individual session chairs will present short position papers in which terms are defined, assumptions and significance are considered, and methodology is addressed. Audience participation is encouraged. One of the major goals of the 13th annual Southwest Symposium is building new and broad understanding of long term change at different temporal and spatial scales throughout the Southwest.