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National Science Foundation (USA) 1996

Rural Responses To Early Urbanism : Village Economy and Ecology in the Jordan Valley

Village Ecology Economy Jordan

NATIONAL SCIENCE FOUNDATION

Titre : Rural Responses To Early Urbanism : Village Economy and Ecology in the Jordan Valley

Organismes NSF : Division Of Behavioral and Cognitive Sci (BCS)

Durée : September 15, 1996 — August 31, 1999

Description
With National Science Foundation support, Drs. Steven Falconer and Patricia Fall will conduct one season of archaeological fieldwork at the site of Tell Abu en-Ni’ai in Jordan. This will be followed by analysis of faunal, floral, ceramic and lithic materials collected and preparation for publication of the resultant information. A brief test excavation by the investigators in 1985 suggests that Ni’aj was a largely sedentary agrarian village during the Early Bronze IV period, a time of dramatic city abandonment and increased mobile pastoralism throughout the region. These soundings revealed three shallow strata with readily accessible domestic architecture and abundant material remains. In their current excavations the team will explore rural agrarian ecology and patterns of household behavior. Substantial samples of material evidence will be collected from all three of Ni’aj’s strata and extensive lateral excavation in the uppermost of these will provide detailed information of village and household layout. While the Near East is seen as a cradle of one major civilization and the process of development is often viewed as unilineal from small hunting and gathering bands to a state level of organization, this in fact is not the case. The Early Bronze Age is of particular archaeological interest because its close marks a time of collapse when urban centers were abandoned and level of complexity appeared to decrease. Little is know about the factors responsible for this change. Although most people during the Bronze Age did not live in urban settings, very little attention has been focused on smaller rural sites. Ni’aj represents just such an occurrence and the proposed research is important both because it will provide a more complete picture of Bronze Age society and offer insight into the processes involved in the collapse. Previous work has demonstrated that Ni’aj is rich in both faunal and floral remains and the investigators will devote considerable attention to the collection and analyses of these materials. Therefore they will learn a great deal about human-environmental interactions in a semi-arid region. The results of their research will be of significance to archaeologists and a wide range of environmental scientists.

Partenaire (s) : Steven Falconer sfalcon1 uncc.edu (Principal Investigator) Patricia Fall (Co-Principal Investigator)

Financement : $56,808.00

Présentation (National Science Foundation)

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