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Contemporary analysis of the Valdivia, a formative period coastal Ecuadorian culture

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Peraza, Christopher
Archaeological Studies Program, University of Wisconsin-La Crosse
May 2007
Archaeology -- Methodology; Ecuador -- Antiquities; Indians of South America -- Ecuador -- Antiquities; Valdivia culture -- Ecuador
The Valdivia culture of coastal Ecuador was a sophisticated Formative Period culture which is best known for being among the earliest ceramic makers in the whole of the Americas. Although it was discovered in 1956 by amateur archaeologist Emilio Estrada, it took ten more years before accredited archaeologists studied the culture and since then few other studies have been made. However most of these studies have since been criticized and outdated, so it has become necessary for contemporary studies on this culture to be made. This project is an examination of the Valdivia culture. By using the earliest published works on the subject including works from archaeologists Betty J. Meggers and Emilio Estrada as source material, and by comparing their research with much more current research this project will present a contemporary description of several aspects of the Valdivia. These aspects will include the Valdivia culture and its relation to the environment, their production of agriculture, the ceramic and lithic technologies they employed and the reasons why they settled in this part of the world. Hopefully this project will not only provide an insight to the cultures of Formative Period Ecuador but will also foster a greater interest into further studies of the Valdivia.
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