House and home at Çatalhöyük: Stable carbon and nitrogen isotope evidence from people and their animals
Start: Jan 27, 2014 04:00 PM
Location: Room 612, Institute of Archaeology
Jessica Pearson (University of Liverpool) will give the third seminar in the Term II Institute Research Seminar series on Isotopes in Archaeology on 27 January.
This paper outlines the results of stable carbon and nitrogen isotope analysis of bone collagen from humans and animals at Çatalhöyük, a Neolithic site in central Turkey. The data presented reveal not just what the inhabitants ate but, more importantly, how they compare with others in the same house. The data show that individuals from the same burial or house often have different diets to one another. In addition, using faunal samples taken only from adjacent middens to formulate a house-specific foodweb indicates that these fauna did not generally make up the majority of the diet of any potential house-dweller. Therefore, few people buried beneath particular houses generated the middens near their burial house suggesting they did not live there long term, and that those buried under the same house did not eat together regularly. Overall, the isotope evidence allows the formulation of the hypothesis that some elements of social organisation and the use of houses at Çatalhöyük were dictated by highly complex sociopolitical factors rather than simple domestic and/or biological ones.
The seminar will take place at 4pm in Room 612 at the Institute and will be followed by a reception in the Staff Common Room (Room 609).
Any enquiries about the seminar series may be directed to Ian Freestone.
Institute Research Seminar Programme | Isotopes in Archaeology
- 13 January: Tracing Visitors to our Shores (Jane Evans, NERC Isotope Facility)
- 20 January: Stable Isotopes, Climate Change and Early Hominin Palaeoecology (Philip Hopley, Birkbeck)
- 27 January: House and home at Çatalhöyük: Stable carbon and nitrogen isotope evidence from people and their animals (Jessica Pearson, University of Liverpool)
- 3 February: The origin and spread of glass making: the isotopic evidence (Patrick Degryse, University of Leuven)
- 10 February: Plant stable isotope analysis: new insights into farming practice and diet (Amy Bogaard, University of Oxford)
- 24 February: Isotope Archaeometallurgy (Ernst Pernicka, Curt-Englehorn Centre for Archaeometry, Mannheim & University of Heidelberg)
- 3 March: Milking the Residues: Molecular and Isotopic Signatures from Human Prehistory (Richard Evershed, University of Bristol)
- 10 March: Hunter-gatherer cuisine: recent advances in chemical and isotopic analysis of early pottery (Oliver Craig, University of York)
- 17 March: Stable light isotopes offer new perspectives on early hominin dietary ecology (Julia Lee-Thorp, University of Oxford)
- 24 March: Loaves or fishes? Reconstructing individual 5000-year-old dietary histories for the children of Shetland's first farmers (Janet Montgomery, University of Durham)