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Seasonal Rhythms and Quotidian Duties: Insights into the Impact of Environment on Structuring Daily Life Using El Eden Wetland, Quintana Roo, Mexico as a Case Study

Author(s): Jeffrey Vadala ; Jennifer Chmilar

Year: 2017

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Summary

All cultural groups must respond to and adapt within their surrounding environment, as was the case for the ancient Maya. The Maya area consists of various distinct ecological zones, from volcanic highlands through swampy bajos and across a dry karstic plain punctuated by wetlands, each providing distinct adaptation opportunities. Seasonal fluctuations provide further texture to the flow of each landscape. This paper explores and attempts to characterize the temporality of the ancient Maya wetland landscape of El Eden, Quintana Roo, Mexico. By temporality, we mean the unique temporal rhythms of the landscape and also social life that organized and guided the interconnected tasks vital to ancient Maya life. To do this, we use a historical ecological approach supplemented by topgraphic data, 3D simulations, and seasonal photographic data. Our theoretically driven approach allows us to reconstruct and characterize the unique seasonal rhythms found at El Eden and the corresponding tasks that uniquely developed in response to the seasonally fluctuating wetland landscape. By focusing on seasonality, temporality, and tasks, we demonstrate that life at ancient wetlands were organized in a unique manner contrasting but also complementing other modes of ecological adaptation seen in the Maya area.


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Seasonal Rhythms and Quotidian Duties: Insights into the Impact of Environment on Structuring Daily Life Using El Eden Wetland, Quintana Roo, Mexico as a Case Study. Jeffrey Vadala, Jennifer Chmilar. Presented at The 81st Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, Vancouver, British Columbia. 2017 ( tDAR id: 429693)


Keywords

Geographic Keywords
Mesoamerica


Spatial Coverage

min long: -107.271; min lat: 12.383 ; max long: -86.353; max lat: 23.08 ;

Record Identifiers

Abstract Id(s): 17297

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