Hybrid Objects, Mixed Assemblages, and the Centrality of Context: Colonoware and Creolization in Early New Orleans
Author(s): Lauren Zych
Following the discovery of unusual handmade chamber pots at Colonial Williamsburg last century, archaeologists began to identify colonoware in contexts throughout North America, the Caribbean, and beyond. Traditionally defined as the product of two or more disparate cultures, colonoware remains the most thoroughly studied category of "hybrid" objects in archaeology today. However, scholars now agree that a myopic emphasis on production –or, more accurately, on the racial identities of producers– severely limited the scope of earlier research. Drawing upon a more holistic approach that considers production and consumption in a single study, this paper presents new data on colonoware and other handbuilt vessels from eighteenth-century New Orleans. The evidence, derived from neutron activation analysis, ceramic petrography, and close contextual analysis, moves us beyond overly-romanticized tales of Indian wives and African mistresses towards a more accurate understanding of the complex relationships that led to creolization in Louisiana during the colonial era.
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Hybrid Objects, Mixed Assemblages, and the Centrality of Context: Colonoware and Creolization in Early New Orleans. Lauren Zych. Presented at Society for Historical Archaeology, Fort Worth, TX. 2017 ( tDAR id: 435542)
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