AAA Annual Meeting Program

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Paper Information:
Type: Paper
Paper Title: ON THE HOOF: THE EXPANSION OF STATES AND THE CIRCULATION OF ANIMALS IN THIRD MILLENNIUM B.C. UPPER MESOPOTAMIA
Author: PHILLIP TRELLA (University of Virginia)   
Date/Time: Thu., 3:15 PM
Co-Author(s): PHILLIP TRELLA (University of Virginia) 
Abstract: On the arid plains of Upper Mesopotamia (southeast Turkey, northern Syria, and northern Iraq), a mixed economy of extensive dry-farming in conjunction with pastoralism has historically formed a very resilient productive symbiosis. Traditionally, the circulation of herd animals in fallow fields has served to enhance the prodcutivity of agriculture through manuring while offering animals access to local pasture near settlements. However, recent research indicates that this system may have been fundamentally transformed during periods of urban agglomeration and state expansion. This paper investigates changes in the system of food production at Titrish Höyük, an Early Bronze Age urban center located in southeastern Turkey. Through zooarchaeological analysis of animal remains spanning most of the third millennium B.C., it is determined that comcomitant with the expansion of the settlement in the mid-third millennium and the establishment of Titrish as the political center of a state-level polity, animal production was significantly intensified. Furthermore, stable isotope analysis of nitrogen from the bones and teeth of sheep, goats and cows indicates that as agriculture was expanded near the center, caprines were increasingly pushed onto outlying pastures further from intensively cultivated fields. Although this change may have provided a short-term increase in overall food production, the long-term sustainability of such a system is in doubt. Moreover, the segregation and specialization of agricultural and pastoral production may ultimatley be implicated in the disintegration of the polity circa 2000 B.C.

Program Number: 2-0800
Session Title: MOTION CHECK: ARCHAEOLOGICAL INSIGHTS ON THE CIRCULATION OF SUBJECTS AND OBJECTS
Session Sponsor: Archaeology Division
Session Date/Time: Thu., 1:45 PM-5:30 PM
Organizer(s): DAVID PETERSON, ALAN GREENE (University of Chicago) 
Chair(s): SARAH GRAFF (University of Chicago)  
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