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Women & Men in the Prehispanic Southwest

Labor, Power, and Prestige

Edited by Patricia L. Crown

This volume takes a groundbreaking look at gendered activities in prehistory and the differential access that women and men had to sources and symbols of power and prestige. The authors—including some of the most prominent archaeologists working in the Southwest today—present invaluable methodological and theoretical case studies that take a great step forward in researchers’ ability to “read” gender in the evidence left behind by ancient societies. Archaeological interpretation is enhanced and critiqued in a summary discussion by a prominent Southwestern ethnologist and feminist anthropologist.

The authors probe the time period during which Southwestern populations shifted from migratory gatherer-hunters to sedentary agriculturalists and from living in small bands to settling in large aggregated communities. The chapters address the organization of space; ritual activities; mortuary goods and burial facilities; food gathering and agricultural production; hunting and domesticated animals; food processing and preparation; health, nutrition, disease, and violence; craft production; and exchange and interaction.

2001. 520 pp., 25 black-and-white illustrations, 20 tables, notes, references, index, 6 x 9

Contributors: Patricia L. Crown, Suzanne K. Fish, Kelley Hays-Gilpin, Michelle Hegmon, Louise Lamphere, Debra L. Martin, Barbara J. Mills, Jeannette L. Mobley-Tanaka, Jill E. Neitzel, Scott G. Ortman, Katherine A. Spielmann, Christine R. Szuter

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“This book presents the first systematic review of gender issues for the prehispanic Southwest by a group of experts in the archaeology and ethnology of the region. It will be of interest and value to everyone concerned with gender and feminist scholarship and will also be important to anyone who cares about the ancient Southwest.”
—Dr. Patty Jo Watson, Edward Mallinkrodt Distinguished Professor of Anthropology, Washington University, St. Louis

“The integration of gender into discussions of socio-political complexity, economic intensification, and ideology and ritual results in an excellent assessment of middle-range societies of the ancient Southwest. . . . [T]his is one of the best volumes on Southwestern archaeology that I have read.”
—Dr. John Kantner, Journal of the Royal Anthropological Institute

“An excellent and uniquely valuable discussion. . . . There is a great deal to think about in this book. I recommend it most highly.”
—Dr. Linda Cordell, Cambridge Archaeological Journal

“This volume represents an important step toward a richer, more holistic view of the prehispanic Southwest.”
—Dr. Stephen Plog, Cambridge Archaeological Journal


  1. Gendered Tasks, Power, and Prestige in the Prehispanic American Southwest
    Patricia L. Crown
  2. Women, Men, and the Organization of Space
    Michelle Hegmon, Scott G. Ortman, and Jeannette L. Mobley-Tanaka
  3. Gender Ideology and Ritual Activities
    Kelley Hays-Gilpin
  4. Gender Hierarchies: A Comparative Analysis of Mortuary Data
    Jill E. Neitzel
  5. Farming, Foraging, and Gender
    Suzanne K. Fish
  6. Gender and Animals: Hunting Technologies, Ritual, and Subsistence in the Greater Southwest
    Christine R. Szuter
  7. Women’s Role in Changing Cuisine
    Patricia L. Crown
  8. Bodies and Lives: Biological Indicators of Health Differentials and Division of Labor by Sex
    Debra L. Martin
  9. Gender, Craft Production, and Inequality
    Barbara J. Mills
  10. Gender and Exchange
    Katherine A. Spielmann
  11. Gender Models in the Southwest: A Sociocultural Perspective
    Louise Lamphere
There are no working papers for this book at the present time.