Presenter: Dr. Elizabeth H. Paris, University of Calgary
Location: Room ICT 121 , University of Calgary @ 7:30pm
Title: Ancient Maya Lithic Technology in the Jovel Valley of Chiapas, Mexico
The ancient Maya are widely recognized for their extensive development of chipped stone tool technology. The objects they created range from elaborate ceremonial objects to the tools that supported the everyday activities of ordinary households. This presentation examines the domestic lithic assemblages from sites in the Jovel Valley of highland Chiapas, which forms the western frontier of the Maya culture area. Located within a mountainous karstic plateau, valley residents had access to multiple sources of high-quality, fine-grained chert, and created diverse assemblages of formal and informal tools. Chert tool production and use in the Jovel Valley was particularly associated with the political center of Moxviquil, where assemblages emphasize weapons production, maguey fiber processing, woodworking, and cross-valley exchange. I also examine the significance of imported obsidian blades and chert spear points within the Jovel Valley, in the context of a robust, local production sphere.