I am an anthropological archaeologist with research interests in gender roles and social identity, household archaeology, ancient and traditional technologies, and figurines. I have done most of my fieldwork in Honduras where I directed excavations at the site of Cerro Palenque and worked at the Classic Maya kingdom of Copan. Other fieldwork experiences include work in Guatemala, Belize, England, and Arizona.
I am the author of Houses in a Landscape: Memory and Everyday Life in Mesoamerica (Duke University Press, 2010), an archaeological study of social memory in three Prehispanic Honduran societies. This book was awarded the first Linda S. Cordell Prize by the School for Advanced Research in 2015. In 2014, I published Material Relations: The Marriage Figurines of Prehispanic Honduras with two colleagues (University Press of Colorado).
As a member of a small department, my teaching covers a lot of topics. I have taught the introduction to archaeology and physical anthropology for many years. Upper-level archaeology topics include the Prehispanic civilizations of Mesomerican and South America, human evolution, archaeological studies of the body, archaeological approaches to landscape and settlement, and technology in ancient societies. I also teach a course on the social life of things that combines archaeology and cultural anthropology. As needed, I cover anthropological theory and capstone.
I have recently developed a First Year Seminar, Bringing the Past into the Present, that uses the rich historical resources of the Gettysburg area to introduce first year students to the research process and to the issues involved in public history and public archaeology.
Starting in August 2015, I have directed the Johnson Center for Creative Teaching and Learning (JCCTL). I work with new faculty, develop programming designed to encourage creative teaching for all that teach at the College, coordinate mentoring programs, and oversee the Center's grants program.
BA University of Pennsylvania, 1979
MA Harvard University, 1980
PhD Harvard University, 1987
Archaeology, Anthropology, Technology, Pedagogy