In lieu of an abstract, here is a brief excerpt of the content:

5 82 Process~ual Archaeology, 1966-1973 We view archaeology as an integral part of the larger discipline of anthropology (Longacre 1964). It shares with the other fields of anthropology the aim of understanding culture and cultural process. Culture can be viewed as the systemic mechanism by which human populations adapt to their total environment. Changes in cultural systems can be viewed as adaptive changes and, as such, basic clues to an understanding of cultural evolution.-Raymond Thompson and William Longacre (1966:272) William Longacre assumed the directorship and full control of Grasshopper research in 1966 and immediately infused the program with the direction and energy of the "new" or processual archaeology. The conceptual shift from culture history to processual archaeology is chronicled best in the review article by Thompson and Longacre (1966:270), in which they enumerate their research questions, goals, and philosophy : Our primary research goal is to describe and analyze the extinct cultural system reflected in the material remains of the site. Implicit in that statement are two important assumptions that must be made clear at this point. First, we view culture as systematic and thus composed of various highly interrelated subsystems such as the social system, the technological system, and the religious system. This approach to culture by the archaeologist has recently been discussed and described by Lewis Binford (1962, 1965). It is our job to infer the nature and interrelations of the sub-systems of prehistoric cultural systems within an ecological frame of reference. Our aim is to isolate and understand the workings of cultural processes, the means by which cultures change or remain stable. To attain our research goals it is necessary to make another primary assumption . This is that all of the material remains in an archaeological site are highly patterned or structured directly as a result of the ways in which the extinct society was organized and the patterned ways in which the people behaved. Thus, our first task is to define the archaeological structure at the site and then from that infer the organization of the society and aspects of behavior. Thompson and Longacre (1966) also listed a number of specific research questions. Although the first three questions represent the culture-history objectives discussed in chapter 3-investigating an unknown region, a poorly known time, and an area of sufficient ceramic variability to make sense of both-the last five questions are quintessential processual archaeology as it was then expressed in the American Southwest. These research questions were so basic, so necessary to write the ethnography of ancient Grasshopper that they continued to guide research throughout the history of the program. This is indicated by the temporal breadth of the published research tackling these questions . After each of Thompson and Longacre's (1966:257) major research questions, we list the papers and publications that addressed the question. 1. To "test the hypothesis of a slight climatic shift at about A.D. 1300" (Dean and Robinson 1982; Holbrook 1982a, 1982b, 1983). 2. To "understand better the processes of population aggregation that culminate during the 14th century in [the Grasshopper region] and many [other] areas of the Southwest" (Ezzo and Price 2002; Graves, Holbrook, and Longacre 1982; Graves, Longacre, and Holbrook 1982; Griffin 1969; Longacre 1975, 1976; Reid 1973, 1978, 1989; Reid and Shimada 1982; Riggs 1994, 1999a, 1999b, 2001; Tuggle 1970). 3. To attempt to define and analyze "the nature of social groups; residence and inheritance patterns, and means of achieving social integration at [Grasshopper] in an effort to understand the processes responsible for the cultural system of the modern western Pueblo peoples" (Ciolek-Torrello 1978, 1984, 1985, 1986, 1989; Ciolek-Torrello and Reid 1974; Clark 1967, 1969; Griffin 1967, 1969; Reid and Whittlesey 1982, 1990; Whittlesey 1978, 1984, 1989; Wilcox 1982). 4. To "delimit the economic basis of this extinct society" (Ezzo 1991, 1992a, 1993, 1994; J. Olsen 1980, 1990; Sullivan 1982; Triadan 1989, 1997; Tuggle, Reid, and Cole 1984; Welch 1991, 1996; Welch and Triadan 1991; Whittaker 1984, 1986, 1987a). Processual Archaeology, 1966-1973 83 5. To investigate "the implications of the stylistic blending evidenced in the ceramics in an attempt to understand the nature of the interaction with adjacent regions" (Crown 1981; Graves 1982b, 1984; Mauer 1970; Montgomery 1992b; Sullivan 1984; Triadan 1989, 1994, 1997; Tuggle 1970; Van Keuren 1994, 1999, 2001; Whittlesey 1974; Zedefio 1991, 1992, 1994, 1995). On a more abstract level, we note that the concise expression of the core principles and philosophy of processual archaeology...


Additional Information

Related ISBN
MARC Record
Launched on MUSE
Open Access
Back To Top

This website uses cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website. Without cookies your experience may not be seamless.