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Earthen dwellings from Banda, Ghana: Geoarchaeological analyses of archaeological and modern structures

Author(s): Melissa Goodman Elgar ; Amanda Logan

Year: 2016

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Summary

West African earthen architecture is among the most elaborated in the world as recognized by the World Heritage site status of Asante buildings at Kumasi. However, its history is poorly known. This study begins to redress this gap by employing bulk sediment analyses and soil micromorphology to characterize building remains recovered at the Ngre Kataa site, in Banda, Ghana and a contemporary earthen compound in the region. The study was conducted in tandem with archaeological and paleoethnobotanical studies in the region which included excavation of superimposed 15th to 17th C occupations and regional ethnoarchaeological studies. Here we consider the technical choices revealed by construction material properties. We found a broad range of material practices identified in the archaeological materials, which appear to be dramatically simplified over time. We consider reasons for continuity and change in these technical practices with reference to socioeconomic and political shifts over the last five centuries.


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Earthen dwellings from Banda, Ghana: Geoarchaeological analyses of archaeological and modern structures. Melissa Goodman Elgar, Amanda Logan. Presented at The 81st Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, Orlando, Florida. 2016 ( tDAR id: 404199)


Keywords

Geographic Keywords
AFRICA


Spatial Coverage

min long: -18.809; min lat: -38.823 ; max long: 53.262; max lat: 38.823 ;

Arizona State University The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation National Science Foundation National Endowment for the Humanities Society for American Archaeology Archaeological Institute of America