Censer fragmentation and life history: rural domestic settlement enchainment and accumulation activities and the Classic-Postclassic transition of the Petén Lakes region, Guatemala.
Author(s): Kevin Schwarz
Fragmentation theory is premised on the notion that actors purposefully broke valued goods, deposited fragments of them in meaningful places, and enchained other social beings in relationships with gifts and exchange of them. They also accumulated whole objects in caches. This presentation examines the fragmentation premise for censers and non-slipped utilitarian ceramics in and around architectural spaces at the Quexil Islands, Guatemala. The site is a Terminal Classic-Late Postclassic Maya settlement in the Petén Department. The Classic-Postclassic transition features a transformation in architecture and social use of space in rural settlements and the use, taphonomy and life histories of these ceramics appear to shift as well. Whereas in the Late Classic period, the rural Maya were part of hierarchical society and their use of architecture and ceramic media reflected that hierarchy, in the Postclassic period there emerged a different pattern. Small, seemingly rural settlements, such as the Quexil Islands, had the ability to conduct censer ritual in the Postclassic. An epicentral ceremonial architectural pattern has substantial censer deposits, while a peripheral pattern of small censer fragments and other non-slipped ceramics predominates in residential contexts. The presentation concludes by considering evidence of up-network and down-network enchainment and accumulation activities.
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This Resource is Part of the Following Collections
- Society for American Archaeology 80th Annual Meeting, San Francisco, CA (2015) •
- Excavating the House: Residential Architecture in the Maya Area
Cite this Record
Censer fragmentation and life history: rural domestic settlement enchainment and accumulation activities and the Classic-Postclassic transition of the Petén Lakes region, Guatemala.. Kevin Schwarz. Presented at The 80th Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, San Francisco, California. 2015 ( tDAR id: 396599)
min long: -107.271; min lat: 12.383 ; max long: -86.353; max lat: 23.08 ;