AAA Annual Meeting Program

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Paper Information:
Type: Paper
Paper Title: LATE PREHISTORIC INTERACTION SPHERES AND LA JUNTA ORIGINS
Author: JOHN SEEBACH   
Date/Time: Fri., 10:45 AM
Co-Author(s): JOHN SEEBACH 
Abstract: In a 1952 issue of the American Anthropologist, J. Charles Kelley united the La Junta Phase (AD 1200–1400), a little known archaeological phenomenon of far west Texas, to sociopolitical events occurring across the American Southwest, particularly Ancestral Puebloan site abandonment. His postulate required substantive economic or social interaction between the two areas, if not a common origin. Kelley opted for the latter, arguing that the La Junta Phase represented an isolated colony of semi-sedentary, part-time foragers from the Jornada Mogollon of southern New Mexico. He went on to suggest that peoples of the La Junta Phase were active participants in the larger Casas Grandes interaction sphere. Kelley’s conclusions were challenged by later researchers, who argued the phase represented autochthonous development among local foraging populations under the influence of the Jornada Mogollon. The debate has not yet been settled. The intractable nature of the issue is in part due to the outmoded cultural-historical terms with which it has been disputed, chiefly the equation of certain items of material culture as representative of unique ethnic identity. Characterizing the La Junta Phase as an archaeological expression of the fluid movement of people and ideas integrated by trade networks and common adaptive constraints is a much more fruitful way of approaching the problem, with the valleys of the Rio Grande and Rio Conchos functioning as the corridors between southern New Mexico, northern Mexico and far west Texas.

Program Number: 3-0405
Session Title: ARCHAEOLOGIES OF NETWORKS AND CIRCULATION
Session Sponsor: Archaeology Division
Session Date/Time: Fri., 10:15 AM-12:00 PM
Organizer(s): ANNUAL MEETING PROGRAM COMMITTEE (AAA) 
Chair(s): JACK ROSSEN (Ithaca College)  
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