Early Hohokam Platform Mounds and Social Signaling

Author(s): David Doyel

Year: 2019


This is an abstract from the "WHY PLATFORM MOUNDS? PART 1: MOUND DEVELOPMENT AND CASE STUDIES" session, at the 84th annual meeting of the Society for American Archaeology.

Between A.D. 900 and 1250 major forces of change were operative among the Phoenix Basin Hohokam. These changes include a shift from ball courts to platform mounds as major public architectural features. What is the meaning of these mounds? A diachronic approach is used to investigate the origins and development of platforms as a new architectural feature type and as a new approach to social signaling. Examples of early platforms like those excavated at Snaketown and Gatlin are analyzed to address construction dynamics, as even these small early platforms, which existed at villages in both the Gila and Salt River valleys, exhibit complex architectural patterns. Context is explored to adduce what this Mesoamerican-inspired architectural feature might have represented in terms of belief systems, ideology, social organization, and other factors. The possibility is investigated that among other functions early Hohokam platforms may have been associated with ancestor veneration as public spectacle within the context of population growth. The more massive platforms of the later Classic period in the Phoenix Basin have remnants of these earlier platforms within their footprints. Did social signals associated with platform mounds remain stable or did they change through time?

Cite this Record

Early Hohokam Platform Mounds and Social Signaling. David Doyel. Presented at The 84th Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, Albuquerque, NM. 2019 ( tDAR id: 451630)

Spatial Coverage

min long: -123.97; min lat: 25.958 ; max long: -92.549; max lat: 37.996 ;

Record Identifiers

Abstract Id(s): 24380