5643 - Material Relations: The Social Lives of Honduran Classic Figurines

Honduras, especially the lower Ulua Valley, has long been recognized as a production center for mold-made figurines in the Late Classic period (ca. 600-1000 AD). Yet despite being singled out in Mary Butler's key article on Maya mold-made figurines published in 1935, Ulua tradition figurines have never been formally described, placed chronologically, or fully examined as products of technological processes and social relations. Our studies of figurines excavated in sites within their production area and outside of it allows us to trace the social lives of these enchanting things. We document the sites and facilities used to transform clay into sculpture at Campos Dos, Travesia, and Cerro Palenque; examine the use of figurines and larger scale clay sculptures in household based life-cycle rituals; and examine how the movement of such figurines, their curation, and final deposition created material relations between families at sites like Copan and Tenampua. Co-author: Rosemary Joyce, University of California, Berkeley, rajoyce@berkeley.edu; Kroeber Hall 3710, Berkeley, CA 94720-3710.

Keywords: Materiality, craft production, Honduras, figurines

Author: Hendon, Julia (Gettysburg College, Ud States of Am / USA)


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