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Patricia Crown – “Drinking Rituals and Politics in Chaco Canyon”

April 17 @ 7:00 pm - 8:30 pm MST (Arizona)

This lecture will be offered through Zoom on the date above. The presenter has asked that the session NOT be recorded nor posted on YouTube.  

Drinking rituals are common throughout the world, and they impact exchange, crafts, the economy, and politics in the past.  For the last two decades, Crown has studied the cylinder jars found primarily in Chaco Canyon.  In this talk, she discusses how the cylinder jar fits into the history of drinking forms in Chaco, the possible inspiration for the vessel shape, the contents and their source, and the etiquette associated with drinking from cylinder jars.  She describes the results of 2013 excavations in Pueblo Bonito that show when the form ceased to be used and how Chacoans terminated the jars and the room where they were stored.  

Patricia L. Crown

Educated at the University of Pennsylvania and The University of Arizona, Patricia L. Crown is an archaeologist who works in the American Southwest.  She recently retired from the University of New Mexico, where she is the Leslie Spier Distinguished Professor of Anthropology Emerita.  She was elected to the National Academy of Sciences in 2014.  Prof. Crown has conducted field investigations in the Ancestral Pueblo, Mogollon, and Hohokam areas of the American Southwest, and has worked in Chaco Canyon since 2005.  She is particularly interested in ritual, women’s roles in the past, and how children learned the skills they needed to function as adults.  To get at these issues, she studies ceramics.  With collaborator Jeffrey Hurst, she identified the first prehispanic cacao (chocolate) north of the Mexican border in ceramics from Chaco Canyon using organic residue analysis.  She directed the re-excavation of a room in Pueblo Bonito, Chaco Canyon in 2013, and the results of that study were published in 2020 by UNM Press as an edited volume, The House of the Cylinder Jars: Room 28 at Pueblo Bonito, Chaco Canyon.  She is currently completing a book on Chacoan cylinder jars.


April 17
7:00 pm - 8:30 pm MST
Event Category:


Fran Maiuri