The World of Secret Societies: Dynamics from the Northwest
Secret societies are one of the most under-theorized and ignored aspects of prehistoric societies in archaeology, yet they may be pivotal in understanding major developments in sociopolitical complexity in the past. Probable prehistoric examples of secret society remains include the elaborately painted caves of Upper Paleolithic France, the communal structures or caves of the Early Near Eastern Neolithic (Gobekli Tepe, Jerf el Ahmar, Nahal Hemar, and others), and the kivas and caves used in the American Southwest. In order to develop a sound theoretical foundation for the role of secret societies in the past, it is essential to understand how they functioned ethnographically. Some of the best ethnographically documented examples of secret societies among complex hunter/gatherers come from the Pacific Northwest and California (e.g., the hamatsa society). We will focus on the exclusive recruitment techniques and strategies that were ethnographically used to create control over politics and economics by secret society members, and the evident goal of such societies to promote the self-interests of their highest ranking members.
SAA 2015 abstracts made available in tDAR courtesy of the Society for American Archaeology and Center for Digital Antiquity Collaborative Program to improve digital data in archaeology. If you are the author of this presentation you may upload your paper, poster, presentation, or associated data (up to 3 files/30MB) for free. Please visit http://www.tdar.org/SAA2015 for instructions and more information.
This Resource is Part of the Following Collections
Cite this Record
The World of Secret Societies: Dynamics from the Northwest. Brian Hayden, Suzanne Villeneuve. Presented at The 80th Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, San Francisco, California. 2015 ( tDAR id: 397566)
min long: -169.717; min lat: 42.553 ; max long: -122.607; max lat: 71.301 ;