Recent investigations into Amerindian prehistory
Mark Plew has worked in Guyana for the past twenty-five years. He serves as a member of the Science Advisory Board, Walter Roth Museum of Anthropology and as Associate Editor of the museum’s journal Archaeology and Anthropology. He has had a long affiliation with the University of Guyana’s Amerindian Research Unit and is Director of the Denis Williams Summer Archaeological Field School.
By Mark G Plew
Professor, Department of Anthropology
Boise State University
Recent years have seen our knowledge of Amerindian prehistory increase significantly. Based upon the work of Smithsonian archaeologists Evans and Meggers in the early 1950s and the extensive body of work by Guyanese archaeologist Denis Williams we have a basic outline of the chronology and material culture of past Amerindian cultures. Evans and Meggers and Williams provide broad synthesis of the prehistory—a synthesis that goes beyond the specific accounts offered by 19th and early 20th century writers like im Thurn, Roth and others.
Beginning in 1997 I began a series of investigations designed to build upon earlier studies and expand our understanding of the diversity of Guyana prehistory. In this context I have worked with a number of colleagues and students. Some of this work has been conducted as part of the Denis Williams summer …..To continue reading, login or subscribe now.