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    Vassar College
   
 
  Oct 17, 2017
 
 
    
Catalogue 2017-2018
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ANTH 235 - Area Studies in Archaeology

Semester Offered: Fall and Spring
1 unit(s)


This course is a detailed, intensive investigation of archaeological remains from a particular geographic region of the world. The area investigated varies from year to year and includes such areas as Eurasia, North America, and the native civilizations of Central and South America.

May be repeated for credit if the topic has changed.

Topic for 2017/18a:  Central Asian Prehistory.  Central Asia is at the crossroads of the East and West. Now comprised of the Former Soviet Union’s “-stans”, archaeology and ethnography reveal a deep antiquity with many unanswered questions. Who were the Andronovoans that buried horses and chariots here 2,000 years ago? How are they related to the Scythians, who are known for their elaborate tattoos? Who built the geometrically patterned earthworks and why? Starting with the earliest traces of human occupation in the region, possibly 1,000,000 years ago, this course assesses the evidence of early Central Asian populations. Linking past and present, the course also examines the role of prehistory in shaping identity of modern Central Asian states. Zachary Cofran.

Topic for 2017/18b:  Historical Archaeology of North America. History tells us a version of the past that is knowable through written records. Historical archaeology provides alternative histories based on the things people left behind. This course begins with the archaeological record of colonial America and ends with the archaeology of today. Throughout, we focus on sites and artifacts of those who are often left out of American history books: the young, the poor, the working class, and a variety of marginalized groups. The remains of their lives help us to see how the past continues to function in the present. April Beisaw.

Prerequisite(s): previous coursework in Anthropology or permission of the instructor.

Two 75-minute periods.



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