Enviro-ethnoarchaeology and archaeology

31 January 2020 13:15 to 14:00

McDonald Institute Seminar Room, Downing Street, Cambridge

This is a CBRL sponsored event and is part of the Pitt-Rivers Laboratory Seminars

Enviro-ethnoarchaeology and archaeology: scientific approaches in archaeology utilising an ethnoarchaeological approach

This seminar presents the application of a new and innovative multi-methodological approach which incorporates ethnoarchaeology to answer questions about Neolithic farming villages in the Middle East. Common methods to investigate the development of these early villages rely on the identification and interpretation of archaeological contexts and their associated material culture. However, we can go one step further and incorporate scientific microscopic techniques in combination with modern ethnoarchaeology to gain further insights. This research illustrates how phytoliths and geochemistry can be used from modern traditionally built villages to provide insights into activity areas and construction practices, and how micro-components examined in animal dungs can be used to help determined animal management, secondary product use and animal diet. 

About the speaker: Dr Sarah Elliott is an environmental archaeologist and a previous CBRL Visiting Fellow at the British Institute in Amman (2015-16 & 2018). In January 2019 whe started a 3-year British Academy fellowship, hosted at Bournemouth University in partnership with the Council for British Research in the Levant. She completed her PhD at the University of Reading investigating early animal management in Iraq and Iran through the identification of animal penning and microscopic signatures of dung in Neolithic villages. She holds an MSc in Geoarchaeology and a BA in Ancient History and Archaeology, also from the University of Reading. In 2014-15 she worked as a Research Assistant on the INEA Project (Identifying activity areas in Neolithic sites through Ethnographic Analysis of phytoliths and geochemical residues) co-directed by Bournemouth University and CBRL Amman. Sarah has also worked on research in South America in the Bolivian Amazon examining pre-Columbian agriculture (University of Exeter) and also held a teaching fellowship at the University of Aberdeen. 

This event is open to all and free to attend.

The lecture will be held at the McDonald Institute Seminar Room, Downing Street, University of Cambridge. 

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