Lisa Johnson

Grant Type

Dissertation Fieldwork Grant

Institutional Affiliation

California, Berkeley, U. of

Grant number

Gr. 9543

Approve Date

October 11, 2017

Project Title

Johnson, Lisa Marie, U. of California, Berkeley, CA - To aid research on 'Analyzing Material Traces of the Ritual 'Event' among the Ancient Maya of Palenque,' supervised by Dr. Rosemary A. Joyce

Through archaeological excavations and the comprehensive analysis of material traces, this dissertation research will investigate the materialization of the ritualized ‘event’ at the Classic Period (250-900 A.D.) Maya site of Palenque in modern day Chiapas, Mexico. The ‘event’ as a moment in a series of moments, punctuated the tempo of everyday life. The ‘event’ and the structured deposition that forms within it are utilized in this research as methodological constructs through which the process of ritualization and the material relations that emerge can be studied. This project has carried out trench excavations of two stone-built structures in a residential plaza group, known as ‘Group IV’ to recover and compare both ritualized and ‘non-ritualized’ contexts. To analyze the material traces of past ritual events, an archaeological approach is proposed that incorporates intensive materials analyses (including paleoethnobotany, chemical analyses, and micromorphology) alongside traditional macroscale approaches in addition to iconographic, epigraphic, ethnographic and historical evidence surrounding Maya ritual practice. The comprehensive analytical and theoretical approach to the anthropological study of ritual proposed in this research seeks to investigate the material relations between people and nonhuman agents and how those relations shift in a ritualized context.