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Credibility Enhancing Displays and the Changing Expression of Coast Salish Social Commitments

Author(s): Adam Rorabaugh ; Kate Shantry

Year: 2016

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Recent developments in evolutionary psychology expanding on signalling theory provide key insights to the connections between expressing social commitments and resource rights. Credibility enhancing displays (CREDs) are a means to convince individuals of commitment to belief systems and can link costly acts or extravagant displays to social success. In the Salish Sea the transition from labrets to cranial modification from 3200-1000 BP has often been framed in terms reflecting a shift from achieved to ascribed social status. Other researchers have argued that labrets may reflect village scale identity not tied to political power. We suggest that an explicitly evolutionary approach provides novel insights into the changing material expressions of Coast Salish social commitments, specifically reciprocal resource access. The shift to cranial modification reflects increased CRED investment and cost, but not necessarily a transition towards ascribed status but instead may be changing expressions of the same forms of social commitments.

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Credibility Enhancing Displays and the Changing Expression of Coast Salish Social Commitments. Adam Rorabaugh, Kate Shantry. Presented at The 81st Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, Orlando, Florida. 2016 ( tDAR id: 404209)


Spatial Coverage

min long: -169.717; min lat: 42.553 ; max long: -122.607; max lat: 71.301 ;

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