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This paper may be of particular interest to:  Practicing and Applied Anthropologists     Teachers of Anthropology in Community Colleges     Students
Type: Paper
Paper Title: WHAT MOVES BETWEEN THE MARGINS? METALLURGY, NETWORKS AND SOCIAL IDENTITY IN ANCIENT EURASIA
Author: DAVID PETERSON, JOHN DUDGEON, MONICA TROMP, WHITNIE RAUH   
Date/Time: Thu., 2:30 PM
Co-Author(s): DAVID PETERSON, JOHN DUDGEON, MONICA TROMP, WHITNIE RAUH 
Abstract: Traditional accounts of the development of metallurgy in the Old World have stressed a materialist/economic approach in which copper and bronze production were byproducts of a long process leading up urbanization. Natural sources of copper and tin are not widely available; for metallurgy to occur, something had to move. Earlier accounts stressed diffusion of unique technologies by itinerant metallurgists who combined the roles of technician, scientist, and entrepreneur. However, the materiality of ancient copper-bronze metallurgy included exposure to toxins that leave traces in human remains; spatially-resolved LA-ICP-MS analyses of individuals from mortuary contexts in Middle Bronze Age communities in the Southern Ural Mountains region indicate that metal production was practiced not by mobile individuals, but in domestic contexts in which entire families were present. The evidence for use of metal from this region in the Middle Volga also suggests that it was metal, and not metallurgists, that circulated between communities. This paper discusses chemical, isotopic, microstructural, and bioanthropological methods that are contributing to a new holistic approach to archaeometallurgy in Eurasia. The results indicate that the importance of metallurgy and metallurgists was defined not by itinerant metalworkers, but on the one hand by membership in broader networks in which materials and innovations circulated, and on the other, by the reproduction of technical knowledge in local communities. This paper further addresses the role these factors may have played in the formation of social identity where metal production occurred on a relatively small scale.

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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