AAA Annual Meeting Archaeology Schedule

Patty Jo Watson Distinguished Lecture, Business Meeting and Reception
Please join us this year for the annual Archaeology Division Business Meeting, Patty Jo Watson Distinguished Lecture, and reception. These events will be held on Thursday evening from 6:15-9:00 pm. This year, Susan Pollock will be the Patty Jo Watson Distinguished Lecturer, and she will speak on “The Subject of Suffering.”
Susan Pollock was a faculty member in the department of anthropology at Binghamton University from 1985 until 2009. In 2009 she moved to the Freie Universität Berlin, where she is professor in the Institute of Near Eastern Archaeology. She has long-standing research interests in Western Asia and has conducted fieldwork in Iraq, Iran, Turkey, the West Bank and most recently Turkmenistan. Her research draws on feminist and political economic approaches, focusing in recent years on subjectivation and commensality. Since 2012, she has been actively involved in the archaeology of the 20th century, with fieldwork at the former airport at Tempelhof (Berlin) and in a World War I POW camp south of Berlin. The abstract for her Distinguished Lecture is as follows:

“The Subject of Suffering”

As the German philosopher Theodor Adorno argued, suffering is one of the most fundamental human experiences. Although as a philosopher Adorno was not concerned with the array of anthropologically known cultural constructions of emotions or personhood, his insight remains a crucial one for anthropology. Yet suffering hardly appears in archaeological research and narratives. Instead, current trends in archaeology, including the focus on materiality, the relevance of things, the dissolution of boundaries between subjects and objects, and the foregrounding of agency all shift attention away from the subject of suffering. I will discuss an archaeology that takes suffering as a central issue, drawing on archaeological work at 20th century sites in and near Berlin as well as from the ancient Mesopotamian world. Rather than promoting an archaeology of positive identifications with (a portion of) the past, I will argue that we need archaeologies that work toward respect and responsibility by acknowledging suffering in both past and present.

Sessions Sponsored by the Archaeology Division


4:00-5:45 Sacred Matter: Animism and Authority in the Indigenous Americas


8:00-9:45 Beyond the Familiar: Towards a Pragmatic Model for Classic Maya Political Organization (1)

10:15-12:00 Beyond the Familiar: Towards a Pragmatic Model for Classic Maya Political Organization (2)

1:45-3:30 Ceramic Ecology XXIX: Current Ceramic Research and Its Implications for Understanding the Past as Familiar/Strange

4:00-5:45 Exploring Human Geography: Global Case Studies in Landscape Archaeology


8:00-9:45 NAGPRA +25: Where Do We Stand, and Where Are We Going?

10:15-12:00 Historical Archaeology in the Americas

1:45-3:30 Poster Session: Archaeology of Production, Consumption, and Meaning

4:00-5:45 NAGPRA +25: Where Do We Stand, and Where Are We Going? Part II

4:00-5:45 Unsettling Colonialism: Spaniards, British Hondurans, and a Regional Perspective on the Southern Maya Lowlands


8:00-9:45 Archaeology of Social and Political Life in Latin America

10:15-12:00 From Dusk to Dawn: Nightly Practices in the Ancient World

1:45-3:40 Material Ontographies

4:00-5:45 Advances in European Bioarchaeology and Mortuary Analysis

4:00-5:45 Advances in Exploring Ethnogenisis and Ethnic Inequality in the (Bio)Archaeological Record

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Archeology Elsewhere on the Annual Meeting Program
Presentations by archaeologists and about archaeology can be found throughout the AAA program in sessions that combine subdisciplinary perspectives and practitioners. These types of interactions are what make the AAA a unique and powerful place for archaeologists to present their research and engage with colleagues. Use the keyword search function in the AAA Preliminary Program and you’ll find archaeology in sessions sponsored by the General Anthropology Division, Middle East Section, The Society for Latin American and Caribbean Anthropology, Society for Anthropology in Community Colleges, Anthropology and Environment Section, Anthropology of Tourism Interest Group, The AAA Committee on Ethics, and in invited sessions by the AAA Executive Program Committee. There are also a few archaeology posters by undergraduates in the annual “First Rites” poster session sponsored by the Society for Visual Anthropology. There are some very exciting presentations in this mix that connect archaeology to neighborhoods, tourism, teaching, contemporary politics, community collaboration, and even ghosts and the otherworldly!

A Couple of Reminders
As always, the theme for next year’s AAA Annual Meeting will be announced and the Call for Papers will be put out almost as soon as this year’s meeting ends. If you have a session you’d like to organize that fits well with next year’s theme and would like be considered for Executive Program Committee sponsorship, the deadline will be in January. Please contact AD Program Chair Severin Fowles if you have questions about this type of sponsorship.

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