On the Persistence of Tradition: Caves, Ritual Performance, and Secrecy among Multi-Ethnic Communities in the U.S. Southwest
Author(s): Kelsey Hanson
Discussions of ritual performance in the U.S. Southwest are often restricted to the analysis of architecture in residential settings, leaving the potential role of caves largely absent from regional discourse. As settings that are less accessible to the entire community, caves likely represent important venues for ritual performance whose participation is intended only for a select audience. The aims of this paper are twofold. First, through the reevaluation of select wooden ritual assemblages from caves in the U.S. Southwest, this paper addresses the distinctive role of these items in ritual performance – from production, use, and appropriate storage in caves. Second, using a case study based on a reevaluation of the ceramic and wooden ritual assemblages from the Point of Pines caves in east-central Arizona, this paper considers the persistence of ritual performance among multi-ethnic communities, asking to what extent the use of these caves represent incompatible imported traditions practiced in secret. By facilitating secrecy, I argue that caves serve as especially important settings for maintaining diverse religious traditions in multi-ethnic communities, allowing for the persistence of otherwise incompatible practices.
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On the Persistence of Tradition: Caves, Ritual Performance, and Secrecy among Multi-Ethnic Communities in the U.S. Southwest. Kelsey Hanson. Presented at The 82nd Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, Washington, DC. 2018 ( tDAR id: 443877)
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min long: -124.365; min lat: 25.958 ; max long: -93.428; max lat: 41.902 ;
Abstract Id(s): 20020