Celine Lamb

Grant Type

Dissertation Fieldwork Grant

Institutional Affiliation

Kentucky, U. of

Grant number

Gr. 9262

Approve Date

April 11, 2016

Project Title

Lamb, Celine C., U. of Kentucky, Lexington, KY - To aid research on 'Constructing Community and Complexity: Hinterland Interactions at the Ancient Maya Settlement of Crescencio, Mexico,' supervised by Dr. Scott R. Hutson

Preliminary abstract: This project assesses the complexity produced in the ancient Maya rural settlement of Crescencio during its occupation from the Late Preclassic to the Late Classic (BC300-AD1000), focusing on socioeconomic interactions among households. Drawing on theories of practice, this project will evaluate the degrees to which community cohesion and inequality existed in this settlement, and how these simultaneously constituted household material practices. To do so, pedestrian survey, spatial analysis of settlement patterns, and test pitting at nine architectural compounds will be used to address household physical integration and distinction over time. Broad-scale horizontal excavations at three of these structures will address how architecture, material possessions, and socioeconomic activities such as feasting and crafting (re)produced and constrained relations of sameness and difference. Ceramic attribute analysis will pay particular attention to how consumption underlined discursive and non-discursive expressions of affiliation and distinction. Studying the diverse relationships hinterland residents engaged in within and beyond their community reconciles agent- and institution-centered perspectives on social complexity and change. This also addresses mechanisms of social integration in societies without the techniques of governance of modern states. Finally, by focusing on how rural and commoner populations mobilize their relationships and identities to strategically negotiate their positions within larger social contexts, this project has the potential to broaden the contemporary relevance of Yucatan’s cultural heretage and contributes to decolonizing the discipline of anthropology.