History, Monumentality, And Interaction In The Appalachian Summit Middle Woodland

ASU Author/Contributor (non-ASU co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
Alice Wright Ph.D, Assistant Professor (Creator)
Appalachian State University (ASU )
Web Site: https://library.appstate.edu/

Abstract: The Middle Woodland period in eastern North America witnessed a florescence of monumental architecture and material exchange linked to widespread networks of ritual interaction. Although these networks encompassed large geographic areas and persisted for several centuries, extant archaeological models have tended to characterize Middle Woodland interaction as an historically unitary process. Using new data from the Garden Creek site in North Carolina, I argue that these frameworks obscure important historical shifts in Middle Woodland interaction. Recent collections-based research, geophysical survey, targeted excavation, and 14C dating (including Bayesian modeling) of this site reveal two coeval diachronic changes: a shift from geometric earthwork construction to platform mound construction; and a shift from the production of special artifacts (mica, crystal quartz) to the consumption of exotic artifacts in association with platform mound ceremonialism. These data hint at important changes in interregional relationships between the Appalachian Summit, the Hopewellian Midwest, and the greater Southeast during the Middle Woodland period, and provide a springboard for considering how processes of culture contact contributed to precolumbian cultural change.

Additional Information

Wright, A. (2014). History, Monumentality, and Interaction in the Appalachian Summit Middle Woodland. American Antiquity, 79(2), 277-294. doi:10.7183/0002-7316.79.2.277. Publisher version of record available at: https://www.cambridge.org/core/journals/american-antiquity/article/history-monumentality-and-interaction-in-the-appalachian-summit-middle-woodland/8A6ABDE3030E29F367568A0F24692AD9
Language: English
Date: 2014
Middle Woodland period, eastern North America, North Carolina, monumental architecture, precolumbian culture

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