Where we sleep: Ethnoarchaeological perspectives on the Near Eastern Neolithic House and Households

Author(s): Ian Kuijt

Year: 2015


How many people lived in individual buildings within early food producing communities? Be it as an explicit driver or as an implicit background landscape, all modeling of small-scale household life, developing Neolithic villages, and the evolutionary trajectory towards the full-blown domestication is linked on some level to demography and the increasing scale of human communities through time. The reconstruction of the scale of Neolithic house, including our engagement with what may represent the shape and materialization of what can be called the nuclear and extended households, is both complex, and in need of further research.

Ethnographic and archaeological studies demonstrate that the number of people living in early food producing houses, farms and villages varies depending upon household life-history, and that in many cases there is significant out migration of household members to other households, neighboring communities. Drawing upon comparative ethnoarchaeological research on 19th century houses and households from the fishing village of Inishark, Co. Galway, western Ireland, I explore how this comparative context reframes discussion of how we model social relations and connections within and between houses in specific, and Near Eastern Neolithic settlements in general.

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Cite this Record

Where we sleep: Ethnoarchaeological perspectives on the Near Eastern Neolithic House and Households. Ian Kuijt. Presented at The 80th Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, San Francisco, California. 2015 ( tDAR id: 395500)


Spatial Coverage

min long: 66.885; min lat: -8.928 ; max long: 147.568; max lat: 54.059 ;