2008-09 Department News

  • Payson Sheets and Tom Sever (PhD ’90) had their satellite archaeology featured again recently in Cosmos; the Science of Everything magazine, Australia’s premier science journal.
  • Mark Mitchell is the editor of a report just published by the PaleoCultural Research Group entitled Geophysical Survey and Test Excavation during 2006 at Larson Village, Burleigh County, North Dakota. Mark’s latest contribution to the premier journal American Antiquity is his article “Communities Make Theory: A Response to Bleed and Roper”. Volume 72(4):789-792.
  • Crystal Watson is a new editorial intern for Cultural Anthropology, the journal of the Society for Cultural Anthropology. As an editorial intern she will be working under editors Kim and Mike Fortun, focusing on expanding the journal's readership and fostering dialogue among SCA members. Her focus will be on articles and authors writing within the themes of Culture and Theory, and Religion.
  • Arthur Joyce just received word that, as part of a collaborative team, he was awarded a $228,000 research grant from NASA: Hyper- and Multi-spectral Satellite Imagery and the Ecology of State Formation and Complex Societies (He is a co-PI with a team from the Rochester Institute of Technology). This research grant was a direct result of his 2007 Innovative Seed Grant award from CU. The PI on the NASA grant, William Middleton, is a collaborator on Art’s IGP project and the NASA grant is for remote sensing studies that will enhance the field research supported by his IGP.
  • Carole McGranahan has been widely consulted by international media in recent weeks on the current unrest in Tibet. Included among them was a request from Savage Minds, an anthropology blog, to contribute a piece on the situation. In other news, she was featured in DAK; The Newsletter of the American Institute of Indian Studies, in their Winter 2008 (Number 16) edition.
  • Bert Covert has been awarded a Faculty Fellowship for the 2008/2009 academic year for a project titled, "Conservation and Ecology of the Tonkin Snub-nosed Monkey." He has also been awarded a National Science Foundation Grant for 2008.
  • Errin Weller is this year's recipient of the Earl Morris award in archaeology.
  • Chris Dixon and Adam Blanford gave excellent presentations at the Society for American Archaeology annual meeting in Vancouver, Canada last Thursday. Chris Dixon gave a paper on Manioc: A New Discovery in the Classic Period Agriculture of Ceren, El Salvador, and Adam Blanford presented a paper on Maize Agricultural Fields and Surveying to the South of Ceren.Payson Sheets, who organized the symposium and gave the introductory paper, was proud of how well they did.
  • Dennis McGilvray’s long-awaited work on the conflict in Sri Lanka is off the press at last. The Crucible of Conflict: Tamil and Muslim Society on the East Coast of Sri Lanka “… is an ethnographic and historical study of Hindu castes, matrilineal family structure, popular religious traditions, and ethnic conflict. It is also the first full-length ethnography of Sri Lanka’s east coast, an area that suffered heavily in the 2004 tsunami and that is of vital significance to the political future of the island nation…McGilvray argues that any long-term resolution of the ethnic conflict [in Sri Lanka] must accommodate this region, in which Sinhalese Buddhists, Tamil Hindus, and Tamil-speaking Muslims are each a significant share of the population…” ISBN 978-0-8223-4161-1 from Duke University Press.
  • Russ McGoodwin has been invited to present an expert paper at the 4th Global Conference on Oceans, Coast, and Islands in Hanoi this week. “Advancing Ecosystem Management and Integrated Coastal and Ocean Management by 2010 in the Context of Climate Change”, is hosted by the Government of Vietnam, Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development and will be attended by bigwig policy-makers from all over the globe.
  • Jakob Sedig, Kathryn Olszowy, Marni LaFleur, James Millette, Emily Mertz, and Colleen Scanlan Lyons have all won 2008 Beverly Sears Graduate Student Grant Awards. 
  • Payson Sheets has won an $86,000 grant from the National Science Foundation for his manioc bed excavations at Cerén.
  • Sarah Taylor published a morsel in the latest Anthropology News. “Let Me See Your Grill; Dental Modification in the Past and Present” surveys dental beautification across cultures and time, including candy “Grillz” in local video stores and inlays she encountered during her own fieldwork in Oaxaca, Mexico. Anthropology News 49(4):54-55.  
  • Payson Sheets has been named a College Professor of Distinction by the College of Arts and Sciences. The honorific title “College Professor of Distinction” is reserved for scholars and artists of national and international distinction who are also recognized by their College peers as teachers and colleagues of exceptional talent. Sheets joins an elite group of 12 professors named for this title since it was instituted in 2005. Information regarding the title and the selection process is on the web at:
    http://www.colorado.edu/ArtsSciences/facultystaff/administration/professordistinction.html
  • Pat Lawrence has accepted a consultant position with the United Nations Equal Access to Justice Program in Sri Lanka for the next 6 months. She’ll be working with war victims, refugees, and other vulnerable populations in this violence-torn region.
  • Jessica Lee and Jonathan O’Brien have each won Fulbright awards for 2008. Jessica will take her Fulbright to Tanzania to conduct dissertation research examining how a deaf-run NGO is facilitating the growth of a culturally deaf community. Jonathan is off to Vietnam to study the ecology and conservation of an endangered primate, the Black-shanked Douc, in Cat Tien National Park and has further feathered his nest with a FLAS scholarship to study Vietnamese language.
  • Michelle Sauther and Matt Sponheimer have received a $28,000 Innovative Grant Program (IGP) grant for their project "Using Biogeochemistry to Assess Human-Induced Ecological Disequilibrium in Madagascar".
  • Donna Goldstein is the Principal Investigator on a new (2007-2010) National Science Foundation grant titled, "Global, National and Local Articulations: The Case of Pharmaceutical Policies in Argentina and Mexico". The research project is both collaborative and interdisciplinary and is exploring questions of intellectual property, regulation, and human rights as they affect access to HIV/AIDS drugs in Latin America.
  • Payson Sheets received an $86,252 NSF grant last week for his Jan-March field season at the Cerén site in El Salvador, to excavate the magnificently preserved manioc fields. He was also awarded a $43,500 Innovative Research grant from the Graduate School for the planned research there in early 2009.  
  • Russ McGoodwin was an invited participant at the 4th Global Forum Conference on Oceans, Coasts, and Islands, April 7-11, held in Hanoi, Vietnam. The Global Forum is the leading forum for high level policy dialogue on ocean issues.  The conference brought together 430 ocean and coastal leaders from around the world representing 71 countries, from all sectors including governments, intergovernmental and international organizations, NGO's, the business community, and scientific institutions.  Invited to join the Fisheries and Aquaculture Working Group of the Global Forum last Fall, Russ authored a policy brief for the conference titled "Climate Change and Fisheries,” which was one among only nine policy briefs that were distributed to conference participants. 
  • Nicole Smith has won a Doctoral Dissertation Improvement Grant from the National Science Foundation, which she will take advantage of while doing her fieldwork in Tanzania.
  • The National Science Foundation devoted a page to Matt Sponheimer's work on their reality check website, Archaeology from Reel to Real. Learn more about Sponheimer's work with strontium isotope analysis, where "X" Never, Ever Marks the Spot". With NSF funding, Dr. Sponheimer and an international team of scientists from England, Germany, South Africa, and the United States have developed and applied new techniques to study the way ancient hominins moved across ancient landscapes. This knowledge is critical for testing a variety of hypotheses about human evolution.
  • Michaela Howells is a winner of the Brown/Ricketts/Udick Grant from the American Association of University Women.
  • Marnie Thomson garnered a pre-dissertation grant from the department and a FLAS grant for her summer studies in Kiswahili.
  • Jonathan O’Brien and Hoang Thach have won grants from Primate Conservation, Inc. for their studies of endangered primates in Vietnam.
  • Magda Stawkowski has been awarded a CARTSS Albert E. Smith grant for Social Science research on Sustainability, Security, and Survival in a New Nuclear Age by the Center to Advance Research and Teaching in the Social Science. The award was granted in support of her project: “Radioactive Knowledge: State Control of Scientific Information in Post-Soviet Kazakhstan.”
  • The Vice Chancellor for Research and Provost announced the award winners for the Second Annual Innovative Seed Grant Program (IGP). Anthropologists walked away with 40% of the awards, with winning proposals by Darna Dufour, Steve Lekson, Michelle Sauther, and Payson Sheets. “The awards provide up to $50,000 for research, scholarship, and creative works to UC-Boulder faculty that: involve new initiatives and take investigators in creative, and sometimes high-risk/reward directions; and have tangible payoffs in terms of future funding, scholarly or artistic impact, and development of new collaborations."
  • Russ McGoodwin was a participant at the symposium, "Coping with Global Change in Marine Social-Ecological Systems," which was held in Rome, Italy, July 8 - 11.  The symposium's primary sponsors were Global Ocean Ecosystems Dynamics (GLOBEC), Eur-Oceans, and Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO/UN).  The registered participants included more than 218 scientists and academics from more than 51 countries.  Russ presented a paper titled "Building Adaptive Capacity in Fisheries Impacted by Global Change," and was also an invited member of the symposium's Distinguished Closing Panel.
  • Doug Bamforth is featured in CU’s online zine today, in an interview about his fieldschool: “Student Perspective: Hands on Learning at the Great Plains Archeology Field School. Students studying archeology at CU have a unique chance each summer to learn in the field at the full-credit Great Plains Archaeology Field School by surveying sites, finding new sites, excavating and processing recovered artifacts.”
  • Dennis McGilvray's book has been featured in INSIDE CU, CU-Boulder's online faculty/staff newsletter. Crucible of Conflict: Tamil and Muslim Society on the East Coast of Sri Lanka (Duke 2008), is an ethnographic and historical analysis of the island's Tamil-speaking Hindu and Muslim communities in the midst of the Sri Lankan civil war with the LTTE Tamil Tigers.
  • Rachel Fleming, one of our graduate students, was among six students honored at a Chancellor’s Fellowship Reception October 23rd in the Koenig Alumni Center. Chancellor Peterson and Dean of the Graduate School, Stein Sture, gave personal recognition to the 2007 and 2008 winners of the most prestigious fellowship awarded from the Boulder campus. The Chancellor’s Fellows receive full support from the Graduate School for two years of graduate study. Fleming is currently doing research in cultural anthropology, with a focus on the world music industry and its ties with local development projects in Latin America.
  • Terry McCabe has been awarded a CU Faculty Fellowship for 2009-2010. The title of the project is: Complexity and Resilience in the Rangelands of Northern Tanzania. The project is designed to bring together 20 years of research among pastoral and agro-pastoral people in northern Tanzania within the emerging framework of resilience and complexity for coupled social/ecological systems. The end product will certainly be a set of articles and possibly a book.
  • Dr. Gerardo Gutiérrez will join our archaeology faculty in the fall of 2009. He is coming to us from a tenured research position at the Centro de Investigaciones y Estudios Superiores en Antropología Social in Mexico City where he has worked for the last four years. Gerardo has an MA in urban studies from El Colegio de México and earned his PhD in anthropology in 2002 from the Pennsylvania State University. In 2002-2003, he held a prestigious post-doctoral fellowship at Dumbarton Oaks. Gerardo’s research is focused on the archaeology, ethnohistory, and human ecology of prehispanic and early colonial peoples of Mexico. He is currently directing two research projects. One is focused on the politics and ecology of the late prehispanic and early colonial period Tlapa-Tlachinollan Kingdom of eastern Guerrero. He is investigating how this multi-ethnic polity responded to two successive waves of imperial conquest in the late fourteenth and early fifteenth centuries: the first at the hands of the Aztecs and, several decades later, with the arrival of the Spanish. Gerardo is also examining the complex large-scale irrigation systems built by the peoples of eastern Guerrero. His research combines archaeological survey and excavation with studies of the Tlapanec codices and GIS based analyses of settlement and landscape. The second project is a study of the impact of Hurricane Stan on archaeological sites and landscapes in Mazatán, Chiapas, México. He uses the results of this study to examine how ancient hurricanes might have impacted human populations in the region. Gerardo has received numerous grants for his research, including from the Foundation for the Advancement of Mesoamerican Studies, the New World Archaeological Foundation, and the Fulbright Foundation. He has numerous publications on his research, including a forthcoming book on the codical history of Tlapa.
  • Our department had a significant presence at this year's American Anthropological Association meeting. Papers and panels were given by faculty members Darna Dufour, Donna Goldstein (two), Carla Jones (two), Terry McCabe, Carole McGranahan (two), L. Kaifa Roland (two), Paul Shankman and Kira Hall (two). Graduate student papers and panels were given by Alicia Davis, Ricardo Moreno-Contro, Chris Morris, Colleen Scanlan-Lyons (two), Carey Scheerer, Magda Stawkowski and Carlos Torres. Recent department graduates giving papers were Mark Calamia, Carol Conzelman, Laura DeLuca (two), Mark Levine, Joanna Mishtal and Rui Murrieta. Other CU graduate students spotted in the corridors were Porter Bourie, Kate Fischer, Rachel Fleming, Meryleen Mena, Margaret Shugart, Casey Sloan and Marnie Thomson. You can find media coverage of the discussion Mothering in the Field by clicking here.
  • Patricia Lawrence, our senior Instructor who teaches courses for Anthropology, Peace and Conflict Studies, and the Baker RAP, has accepted a full-time position with a German NGO (Arbeiter Samariter Bund) overseeing their social service projects in Sri Lanka. Among these ASB-funded projects is the Children’s Butterfly Peace Garden in Batticaloa, where Pat has frequently served as a consultant in the past. Pat will take up her new appointment in Sri Lanka on January 1, 2009.
  • Art Joyce was awarded a CARTSS Grant to support archaeological research on the origins, development, and collapse of state societies in the lower Río Verde Valley on the Pacific coast of Oaxaca, Mexico. He is co-directing the project with CU alum, Stacy Barber (Assistant Professor at the University of Central Florida). The project will consist of excavations on the acropolis at the regional political center of Río Viejo along with the analysis of artifacts and architecture. The project is a feasibility study to identify locations for large-scale excavations in subsequent field seasons.