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Bundled Transfers and Water Shrines:the big-historical implications of a pan-American phenomenon

Author(s): Timothy Pauketat

Year: 2017

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Summary

Even a cursory outline of the pan-continental history of non-domestic circular architecture impels us to relate similar buildings, some of which are water shrines, in the greater Cahokia region to Mesoamerica and the Southwest. In the central Mississippi valley, standardized steam baths, rotundas, and circular platforms make a dramatic appearance in the late eleventh century CE. Explaining the big-historical patterns, of which this appearance is a part, entails theorizing the bundled transfer of putative religious practices. Thus, this paper draws from both a contemporary relational archaeology and the anthropology of Michael Taussig and Mary Helms. The result involves rejecting yet-common functional categorizations of circular architecture while unpacking how the animacies of buildings are localized. Definitive conclusions are not yet possible, but the implications include rethinking pan-American "connections."


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Bundled Transfers and Water Shrines:the big-historical implications of a pan-American phenomenon. Timothy Pauketat. Presented at The 81st Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, Vancouver, British Columbia. 2017 ( tDAR id: 429401)


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Spatial Coverage

min long: -104.634; min lat: 36.739 ; max long: -80.64; max lat: 49.153 ;

Record Identifiers

Abstract Id(s): 14529

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