Past human activities: ethnographic and geostatistical models from North Gujarat (India)


The main aim of archaeological research is the reconstruction of past human activities. So far this has been achieved mostly through the study of material culture. However, activities related to food production and consumption represent an important part of human life and leave microscopic and chemical traces. The use of ethnography and geostatistical approaches can help in unlock the patters and identify activity areas in a controlled environment. We present here results from a multidisciplinary study in carried out in north-west India where domestic structures and activities can represent good proxies for prehistoric life-ways. Our experiment is not intended to create direct parallelisms between present and past-times, but to test the reliability of our methodology against known activities. We combined multi-element geochemistry, spot tests and phytolith analyses with a geostatistical approach to identify activities areas in a domestic compound (house and courtyard). Results show the validity of the methodology proposed and the potential of a multi-proxy approach to the study of human activities.

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Cite this Record

Past human activities: ethnographic and geostatistical models from North Gujarat (India). Marco Madella, Carla Lancelotti, Alessandra Pecci, Javier Ruiz-Perez, Fernanda Inserra. Presented at The 80th Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, San Francisco, California. 2015 ( tDAR id: 395465)


Spatial Coverage

min long: 59.678; min lat: 4.916 ; max long: 92.197; max lat: 37.3 ;