Anthropology | North American Prehistory Through Fiction
P399 | 0425 | Scheiber

Meets 2nd 8 Weeks

In this course, we will read several fictionalized accounts of life in
Prehistoric North America, written by anthropologists, Native
Americans, and novelists, as a means to think critically and
creatively about the past.  We will use these novels to consider what
we think we know about this topic - from archaeological and
paleoenvironmental evidence and from ethnoarchaeological and
anthropological research - and to discuss the language of
archaeological writing.  We will explore the role and place of
narrative and imagination in the constructions of the past and how
these authors utilize available data.  We will consider the "success"
of each author in expanding, challenging, and constraining our
understandings. Most of the novels will be set in the past, from the
first inhabitants of this continent 11,000 years ago to their
descendants who met European invaders in the sixteenth century, and
another novel will discuss the past by presenting a contemporary
archaeologist as the lead character.  There will be two short position
papers and a final exam. Students will each participate in one
student-designed panel presentation. ANTH P200 or an equivalent course
on the methods, theories and concepts of archaeology is recommended.