Wednesday, January 20, 2016

PRESENTATION: “bone detective” to visit Saint Mary’s with ground-breaking new research

Champlain's map of 1609 showing the river's Fr...
Champlain's map of 1609 showing the river's French name of Rivière du Dauphin. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Paleoethnobotany Public Talk - NS Archaeology Society (January 28)

Tue Jan 19, 2016 3:48 pm (PST) .


Thursday, January 28, 2016
7:30 PM, Atrium 101
Saint Mary's University
The Seeds of Inquiry: Paleoethnobotanical Research in Atlantic

Dr. Michael Deal, Memorial University of Newfoundland (MUN)

The term "ethnobotany" was coined in 1895 in reference to the
study of plants used by aboriginal peoples. The field was
later broadened to include plant remains from archaeological
sites. This more recent subfield, which is referred to as
"paleoethnobotany," or "archaeobotany," concerns
the recovery and analysis of archaeological plant remains as a
basis for understanding past human and plant interactions.
Paleoethnobotanical research was slow to develop in eastern
Canada, and particularly in Pre-contact archaeology. This talk
outlines the development of paleoethnobotany in Atlantic Canada
through a number of cases studies involving the author and
various colleagues. Much of this research has been conducted
through the MUN Paleoethnobotany Lab.

Dr. Deal has had a diverse career in archaeology, which has taken
him to Mexico, Guatemala, Cyprus, and multiple locations within
Canada. His work focuses on ceramic ethnoarchaeology,
paleoethnobotany and, more recently, Canadian industrial and
aviation heritage.

Dr. Deal's teaching career began in 1985 at St. Mary's
University, which led to the initiation of paleoethnobotanical
research in Nova Scotia. This work resulted in the creation of a
comparative modern seed collection of over 500 species, which is
currently in use in the Paleoethnobotanical Laboratory, at
Memorial University. Paleoethnobotanical research has since been
expanded to include a variety of sites throughout Nova Scotia and

The Minas Basin Archaeological Project
<> , sponsored by
the Nova Scotia Museum, aims to reconstruct prehistoric patterns
of land use and resource exploitation in the Minas Basin. This
project applies a diverse methodology, including ceramic
analysis, paleoethnobotanical investigations and
thermoluminescence dating, and the cataloging of local museum and
private collections. Current research interests in Nova
Scotia are focused on the Boswell Site, a Pre-contact, deeply
stratified site along the Annapolis River. This work began in
2011 with the involvement of the Nova Scotia Museum and the
Mi'kmaq Rights Initiative.

Professor Deal is available for interviews prior to Thursday,
January 28, 2016 and can be reached at 709-691-8310

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