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AfricaNSFThe Research University (TRU)

DDIG: Analysis of Faunal Remains from the Middle Pleistocene Site of Orgnac 3, France: Stanford University

Richard Klein

[email protected]

Under the supervision of Dr. Richard Klein, Jason Lewis will analyze faunal remains from archaeological excavations of the French cave site of Orgnac 3. This site, dating from between ~350,000to ~290 000 years ago, has yielded very large stone artifact and animal bone assemblages and seven fossil human teeth. For part of its depositional history, Orgnac 3 was a cave, and for another, it was a sink-hole. The site preserves large samples from short time periods within the long Middle Pleistocene interval. It contains charcoal/sooty lenses with burnt bones that have been interpreted as hearths and accumulations of artifacts and bones surrounded by natural rocks that may represent the bases of dwelling structures. For these reasons the Orgnac 3 materials lend themselves to answering many questions about human paleoecology during the middle and late Middle Pleistocene.<br/><br/>Much work in paleoanthropology has focused on one particular aspect of human paleoecology, that of subsistence strategy. When people started acquiring meat and other animal tissues, whether through scavenging or hunting, and how human subsistence strategies have changed over time, remain hotly debated topics. How different human populations might have foraged differently, and the evolutionary import of those differences, are important questions to ask of the archaeological and paleontological records. This is especially true when considering the Middle and Late Pleistocene, when different human species lived on different continents, but by the end of the Pleistocene, only one species remained: Homo sapiens. To reach the ultimate goal of understanding changes in subsistence strategy throughout human history, one must begin with a robust, scientific reconstruction of how a sample faunal assemblage passed through several stages in which hominid activity or natural processes could have altered its composition. This project adopts such a holistic approach to document the carcass acquisition and processing behaviors of the human inhabitants of Orgnac 3 and to examine how these behaviors have changed throughout the evolution of the human species. Once the carcass acquisition and processing behaviors of the Orgnac 3 people have been characterized, these can be compared to other Middle Pleistocene sites in Europe and Africa in order to elucidate how these behaviors have changed through time and across space.<br/><br/>Beyond research questions of interest to prehistoric archaeologists, this project will have a broader impact by providing assistance in graduate student training and strengthening collaborative relationships between institutions in US and France, specifically those between Stanford University and the Centre Européen de Recherches Préhistoriques in Tautavel and Institut de Paléontologie Humaine in Paris. This work will increase awareness of one of the oldest and largest fossil human sites in France. Furthermore, the primary data generated here will be made available to the Centre Européen de Recherches Préhistoiriques, for them to use in their own research, curation planning, and pedagogical development (in their educational materials and in the adjoining Centre Européen de Préhistoire ).

AfricaNSFThe Research University (TRU)

Collaborative Research: Structure and Tone in Luyia: University of Maryland College Park

Christopher Green

[email protected]

How and why do languages vary? Studying closely related languages can tell us important details of the nature of human language, by holding most grammatical properties constant while varying others, across a set of languages. Understanding the limits on such variation?and how such differences arise historically?requires an accurate description of a group of related languages. <br/><br/>The heterogeneous varieties of Luyia, a group of Bantu languages of Kenya and Uganda, provide a laboratory for investigating such micro-variation in grammar. This project will produce the first comprehensive descriptions and formal analyses of four underdocumented Kenyan varieties of Luyia: Bukusu, Logoori, Tiriki, and Wanga. A series of monographs will be developed for each language which include a grammatical outline, a detailed description of the tonal system, in-depth studies in syntax, a collection of texts, and a dictionary. <br/><br/>The diverse tone systems of Luyia are a major focus of this work. Luyia tone has many notable features, including a rare process by which High tones spread leftward across and within words. Complex tonal patterns mark inflectional differences among verb tenses, and syntactically conditioned rules are also found in the phrasal tonology. A solid understanding of these processes bears crucially on theories of the phonology-syntax interface, which are concerned with what kind of syntactic information can be used by a phonological system. These theoretically and typologically interesting features of Luyia tone will be systematically investigated through targeted paradigmatic elicitation. <br/><br/>This project models team-based, data-rich and theoretically informed linguistic description and analysis. The Luyia team draws on the expertise of linguists in multiple subfields and brings together US-based and Africa-based scholars, enriching the practice of linguistics by each group. The monographs, text collections, and dictionaries produced by the project will be made freely available online, and relevant materials will be disseminated within the appropriate local communities.

AfricaNSFThe Research University (TRU)

Collaborative Research: Structure and Tone in Luyia: Syracuse University

Christopher Green

[email protected]

How and why do languages vary? Studying closely related languages can tell us important details of the nature of human language, by holding most grammatical properties constant while varying others, across a set of languages. Understanding the limits on such variation?and how such differences arise historically?requires an accurate description of a group of related languages. <br/><br/>The heterogeneous varieties of Luyia, a group of Bantu languages of Kenya and Uganda, provide a laboratory for investigating such micro-variation in grammar. This project will produce the first comprehensive descriptions and formal analyses of four underdocumented Kenyan varieties of Luyia: Bukusu, Logoori, Tiriki, and Wanga. A series of monographs will be developed for each language which include a grammatical outline, a detailed description of the tonal system, in-depth studies in syntax, a collection of texts, and a dictionary. <br/><br/>The diverse tone systems of Luyia are a major focus of this work. Luyia tone has many notable features, including a rare process by which High tones spread leftward across and within words. Complex tonal patterns mark inflectional differences among verb tenses, and syntactically conditioned rules are also found in the phrasal tonology. A solid understanding of these processes bears crucially on theories of the phonology-syntax interface, which are concerned with what kind of syntactic information can be used by a phonological system. These theoretically and typologically interesting features of Luyia tone will be systematically investigated through targeted paradigmatic elicitation. <br/><br/>This project models team-based, data-rich and theoretically informed linguistic description and analysis. The Luyia team draws on the expertise of linguists in multiple subfields and brings together US-based and Africa-based scholars, enriching the practice of linguistics by each group. The monographs, text collections, and dictionaries produced by the project will be made freely available online, and relevant materials will be disseminated within the appropriate local communities.

AfricaNSFThe Research University (TRU)

The Nature of the Archean Geomagnetic Field: University of Rochester

John Tarduno

[email protected]

The origin of the geomagnetic field is important for understanding the evolution of Earth's deep interior, surface environment and atmosphere. But defining the nature of the early geomagnetic field is challenging; even the best preserved rocks from the Archean eon (more than 2.5 billion-years-old) have seen low grade metamorphism (at 200 degrees C to 320 degrees C) related to geologic events after their formation. The acquisition of later magnetizations by these rocks is expected, precluding use of conventional paleointensity techniques. A newly developed approach to the problem, utilizing CO2 laser heating and DC SQUID magnetometer measurements, provides a means to obtain paleodirections and intensities from single silicate crystals which host magnetite inclusions. Using these techniques, 3.2 billion-year-old field strengths have been reported from Archean rocks of South Africa that are within 50% of the present-day value. This indicates that a viable magnetosphere sheltered the early Earth's atmosphere from solar wind erosion.<br/><br/>Rocks older than 3.2 billion years old are found in South Africa and Swaziland, potentially holding a 300 to 400 million-year-long record of geomagnetic field behavior preserved in single silicate crystals. The new paleointensity approach can also be used to examine these rocks. If the geomagnetic field was present during this interval, these data should provide bounds on its strength, and they may be used to make inferences on field morphology. Such constraints on the nature of the earliest geomagnetic field are of interest to a broad range of sciences interested in core and mantle processes.<br/><br/>Among the broader impacts of these investigations are that they form the basis for the dissertation studies of graduate and undergraduate students. Students take part in field and laboratory work, and assist in K-12 activities, integrating graduate and undergraduate teaching efforts at the University of Rochester with area school programs. <br/>

AfricaNSFThe Research University (TRU)

Doctoral dissertation research: Linguistic avoidance and social relations: SUNY at Buffalo

Jeffrey Good

[email protected]

What is the role of language in how we manage our relationships with other people? This dissertation project investigates this question from the perspective of a Tanzanian language called Datooga, which has a special respect vocabulary used only by women. Out of respect for their husbands' families, married women avoid saying the names of their in-laws, as well as any ordinary words in the language that sound like these names. To be able to talk freely while still observing the taboo, Datooga women have developed an entire additional vocabulary, distinct from that of the ordinary language. "Avoidance registers," as these special vocabularies are known, are rare across the world's languages, but have arisen independently in several parts of Africa, as well as in Mongolia and Australia. Unfortunately, we currently have an incomplete picture of how these avoidance registers work, because most previous research has relied on interviews with speakers rather than observation of actual speech. This dissertation project will provide the first comprehensive documentation of an avoidance register in everyday use.<br/> <br/>Avoidance registers are important for the study of language because they illustrate strikingly the social function of language; they are motivated solely by interpersonal concerns relating to gender, kinship, and social status. To explore the social dynamics of the Datooga avoidance register, this project involves collecting, transcribing, and analysing audio-visual recordings of spontaneous interaction in Datooga homesteads, as well as compiling a database of avoidance vocabulary. Fieldwork will be conducted in Manyara Region, Tanzania, and data will be collected from several families across the region. This project will significantly advance our understanding of linguistic avoidance and its role in social life, while also building on our knowledge of an understudied language and making a unique contribution to the documentation of the world's linguistic diversity.

AfricaNSFThe Research University (TRU)

Examination of Dental Maturation in South African Australopithecines by Computed Tomography: Washington University

Glenn Conroy

[email protected]

Drs. Conroy and Vannier are pioneers in the application of computed tomographic (CT) techniques to paleontological materials. With previous NSF support, they have demonstrated that fossilized specimens still partially embedded in sedimentary matrix may be analyzed. With CT, the adhering material can, in effect, be stripped away to reveal the underlying bone. Also it is possible to examine the internal structure of the bone. These results have permitted paleontologists and paleoanthropologists to address new questions. In this project Dr. Conroy and Vannier will continue their study of fossil hominid (human) cranial remains. They will travel to South Africa, where many important specimens were found and are now housed and conduct CT studies. The results, stored in computerized form, will then be analyzed at Washington University. To provide baseline data, a sample of modern specimens will also be studied. In particular, the team will focus on the teeth and stages of dental eruption. In this way they will attempt to determine the age at which individuals died and to reconstruct the patterns of dental eruption. This research is important for several reasons. First, anthropologists cannot agree on how many different kinds of early humans are represented in the African fossil record. Through comparison of developmental rates in a number of fossils, these groupings may become more clear. Secondly, anthropologists argue about the extent to which different hominid species were, in their developmental rates, more human or more pongid (great ape) like. Until this work, the evidence has been limited to visual inspection which noted the teeth protruding from the mandible or maxilla. Because the CT technique allows one to examine the developmental stages of unerupted teeth, it offers a much more sensitive measure. Finally, this research will provide additional insight into the development of basic human biological characteristics.

AfricaNSFThe Research University (TRU)

Doctoral Dissertation Improvement :Influences of Materials Properties and Biomechanics on Stone Tool Production: George Washington University

Alison Brooks

[email protected]

In contrast to their great ape relatives, humans have spread from their original home in a limited region of Africa to occupy and even dominate almost all terrestrial habitats. Their success has in part been attributed to the use of, and dependence on, technology of which stone tools represent the earliest evidence. The form of stone tools, together with data on their use and manufacture (knapping), also provide a long record of human cognitive development. Since the early period of tool production corresponds to major changes in the morphology of the hand, wrist and arm, researchers have suggested that increasing use of stone tools played a role in shaping modern human upper limb anatomy. The fracture mechanics involved in producing stone tools in different raw materials and the biomechanics of the upper limb during stone tool production, however, are not well understood. The interactive relationship of fracture mechanics and upper limb morphology on the resulting stone tool is also unclear. This project addresses these issues from an interdisciplinary perspective that integrates lithic analysis with experiments in fracture mechanics and biomechanics. Two main hypotheses will be tested: 1.) magnitude and direction of knapping forces required to produce specific flake morphologies can be predicted from raw material properties (i.e., toughness) and core shape, and, 2.) evolved upper limb morphology in Homo plays a key role in efficient stone tool production.<br/> The research design involves fracture mechanics experiments on relevant raw materials, followed by a two phase analysis of knapping motions using a digital motion analysis system to study upper limb motion patterns and forces acting across the hand and wrist. The motion analysis study will involve ten experienced knappers replicating stone flakes and tools in two different raw materials from four different successive tool traditions (Oldowan, Acheulian, Levallois and Middle Stone Age). The two phases will involve the same tasks but in the second phase the knappers' wrists will be restrained to ~30° of anterior-posterior motion to simulate the primitive condition found in African apes and early hominins. Flakes and tools from the two phases will be compared and analyzed for the accuracy and efficiency of motions during the natural vs. the restrained condition. The goal of this study is to determine how fundamental variables involved in stone tool production (material toughness, fracture behavior, core shape and upper limb kinematics) interact to determine flake morphology, knapping accuracy, and energetic efficiency. The study will provide new insights into the advent and development of stone tool production and the evolution of the human upper limb. This in turn has significant clinical implications for understanding upper limb joint motions, variations in morphology, and the impact of injuries and degenerative bone diseases.

AfricaNSFThe Research University (TRU)

RAPID: The Emergence and Evolution of Forced Migration Routes: Colby College

Nadia El-Shaarawi

[email protected]

With more than 65.3 million forced migrants worldwide, global displacement is at an all-time high. Most of the displaced are located in states adjacent to their countries of origin, primarily in the Middle East or Africa. One of the characteristics of contemporary displacement is that these countries of first asylum host the majority of refugees, who often live in limbo in camps or urban centers for years, while richer states keep refugees and migrants at arms' length through policies of deterrence and border control. However, from 2014 through 2016 more than one million migrants reached Europe via the Balkan land route, breaching "Fortress Europe" in unprecedented fashion. This mass migration has far reaching impacts for the stability of the European Union and the lives of millions of refugees and migrants. Yet, almost no empirical research has been conducted on the route, leaving open questions about how the route was forged and the role of refugees themselves in its creation. These questions can only be answered through ethnographic fieldwork while many of the key actors and sites remain in place along the route. This research takes place in the context of the largest global forced migration since World War II. Findings will be disseminated to aid organizations that explore and manage the causes, consequences, and complexities of mass migration. The research also fosters international scientific cooperation, and will train undergraduate students in methods of anthropological data collection and analysis.<br/><br/>This RAPID award supports fieldwork in Egypt, Greece, Serbia, and Germany – countries of departure, transit, and destination – to understand mobility along the Balkan route. The investigators, Drs. Nadia El-Shaarawi and Maple Razsa of Colby College, have longstanding relationships with migrants and refugees from the Middle East, as well as networks along the route, which will allow them to gain access to sites that might otherwise be clandestine and inaccessible. Through participant observation and interviews at sites that have been crucial to recent migrant mobility, sites where migrants and humanitarian workers come together, the researchers will study the forms of negotiation and struggle that made the route possible. Further, they will investigate how migrants experience and manage efforts to restrict their movement. A focus on the route itself, and the ways that refugees and migrants sustained mobility within networks along the route, will provide an empirical alternative to analyses of refugees as victims as well as a methodological tendency to study refugees in place. Such an approach will shed light on how migrant mobility itself is organized, sustained, and curtailed. While the ongoing crisis is unique in scale, an understanding of its social complexity can inform our knowledge of other, similar processes of migration and displacement in the U.S. and worldwide. With the number of refugees only increasing globally, displacement remains a topic of important social and political concern.

AfricaNSFThe Research University (TRU)

Doctoral Dissertation Research: Language Ideologies, Conservation Ideologies: Multilingualism and Collaboration in Transnational Environmental Work: University of California-Los Angeles

Paul Kroskrity

[email protected]

Environmental conservation efforts are often directed to regions of the world that have high levels of biodiversity. Such areas frequently have high levels of linguistic diversity, as well. This means that the difficulties of bringing about coordination and cooperation among diverse stakeholders are all too often compounded by miscommunications and misunderstandings resulting from linguistic failure. Successful conservation requires collaboration between scientists, educators, hunters, farmers, policy makers, and citizens, all of whom may have different goals and hold different beliefs about the environment. How is such collaboration possible when people must work across multiple languages to communicate? When is it successful? When and why does it fail? To answer these questions, University of California Los Angeles anthropology doctoral candidate Rosalie Edmonds, supervised by Dr. Paul V. Kroskrity, will conduct a close anthropological and linguistic investigation of communication and collaboration in a site that is both highly bio-diverse and deeply multi-lingual. Examining how varied stakeholders work together in this site will enable the creation of appropriate policies and practices for multi-lingual workplaces wherever they may occur.<br/><br/>The research will take place at the Limbe Wildlife Centre in Cameroon, Central Africa. This is an appropriate site for this investigation because in addition to English and French, Cameroon is home to 280 indigenous languages and the Centre is also visited by tourists who speak yet more languages. Despite these major lingustic challenges, the Centre has successfully rescued and rehabilitated animals for over twenty years, while also providing environmental education programming in local schools and rural communities, and serving as a tourist destination. In such a diverse context, what languages do people use to communicate with each other, and how do they resolve misunderstandings? The researcher will collect data by observing how people collaborate to solve environmental problems. She will record daily activities and natural language interactions; conduct interviews to explore people's beliefs about conservation work and perceptions of communication; and carry out participant observation to gain an insider understanding. By combining approaches from linguistic and environmental anthropology, this research document how people talk about, conceptualize, and perform conservation-related tasks in a multilingual environment, and what impact their talk has on how the work is accomplished. Clarifying how people communicate and work together in this situation will permit a new perspective on how global problems can be successfully negotiated in transnational, multilingual settings. Additionally, this research will develop practical materials to facilitate cross-cultural communication, including language guides, and a best practices workshop for communicating with people from different backgrounds.

AfricaNSFThe Research University (TRU)

Doctoral Dissertation Research: Death and Migration: Negotiating the Secular and Islam in Greece: Yale University

Marcia Inhorn

[email protected]

Doctoral student Christina Palivos (Yale University), with the guidance of Dr. M. Kamari Clarke, will undertake research on secularism, the state, and migration. As migrants with particular religious orientations move into secular and semi-secular democracies, they pose unanticipated challenges for both the theory and practice of modern state governance, as evidenced by the head scarf debate in France. Palivos will focus her research on the problems of burial of migrant Muslims who die while moving through Greece on their way to various destinations in Europe. In the past decade, the Evros River and the Aegean Sea along the eastern borders of Greece have become the main points of entry for approximately 90 per cent of migrants en route to Europe from the Middle East, Africa, South Asia, and Central Asia; many of them are Muslim. As the number of people crossing these bodies of water has grown, so has the number who die along the way, making Greece an excellent site to explore these issues. <br/><br/>Palivos will undertake eighteen months of ethnographic research amongst Muslim immigrants in three Greek locations: Athens, Lesvos, and Alexandroupolis. She will gather data on the different treatments that Muslim dead receive in Greece, including repatriation of remains to the country of origin, relocation of remains from to Thrace (the only Greek site with Muslim cemetaries), and local burial of unidentified remains in unmarked graves. Research methods will include participant observation, semi-structured interviews, burial case studies, repatriation case studies, and archival research. <br/><br/>This research is important because it will contribute to social scientific understanding of how the current economic crisis and attendant migration are together changing what it means to be a modern state subject. Her research also will fill gaps in what is known about the circulation of dead bodies within and across national borders and contribute to the ethnography of contemporary Greece. Supporting this research also supports the education of a graduate student.

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