About

The Southwest in the World is the working title of a book I’m writing.   I’ve decided to put parts of each chapter on the web, more or less as they are being written.  Actually, I am posting a short summary essay linked to a PDF of a “chapter fragment” — the in-process draft.   If you want the whole thing, read the PDF; but be aware that it’s a rough draft, lacking illustrations, incomplete references, etc.    The PDF chapter fragments will disappear after about a month; summary essays will remain posted.

The Southwest in the World is the second in a series of three books.  In 2009, I published the first, a book looking at the region historically: A History of the Ancient Southwest (SAR Press).   The current (second) book, The Southwest in the World, uses that history to do science.   It’s a science book.   A  third book (if I live that long) will look at Southwestern archaeology through arts and literature; its working title is History & Heritage in Southwestern Archaeology.

A History of the Ancient Southwest was a narrative (two parallel narratives, actually: history of archaeology and ancient history).  It was a sustained argument: you have to read the whole book.  The chapters in Southwest in the World are thematic and more-or-less stand alone.  The working Table of Contents is available, if you’re really interested — it’s cryptic, because several chapters are still taking shape.

I’m blogging bits of this book (1) to get ideas out in a timely fashion, and (2) to get comments and criticisms.   So: fire away!  Straighten out my misinterpretations.  Tell me about reports & articles I should read.   Argue, if you want to.   All advice appreciated!

I am a Southwestern archaeologist, Curator of Archaeology at the University of Colorado Museum of Natural History.   Steve Lekson CV

2 Responses to About

  1. Doug Mitchell says:

    Steve-
    I applaud your efforts to bring Diamond’s books and ideas into mainstream archaeological thought. I personally think his writings are outstanding in their breadth and explanatory power. I deal with detailed archaeological excavation data frequently, and while detailed stuides are the stuff on which grander ideas are based, it is refreshing to read reconstructions done from the 30,000 foot level. I would like to apply his various rules and guidelines specifically to Hohokam, and see where we end up!

  2. Cal Riley says:

    Steve — I think you may be onto something with your altepete idea. It seems likely that under your system, Casas Grandes, my Sonoran statelets, most (all?) of J. Charles Kelley’s Durango and Zacatecas sites (Alta Vista, Schroeder, etc.) as well as the Pequenos estados of western Mexico, and perhaps Classic Mimbres could be included in the altepeme.

    Will look forward to more chapters!

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