General

|General

Life and leisure at TBI

It’s the little things that will make you worry when you sign up for something like the Turkana Basin Field School. Most of this blog has documented the stuff that might be expected. You sign up for a semester studying human evolution in Kenya and you hike through the desert, see a few zebra, pet [...]

By | 2017-01-04T18:05:09+00:00 March 20th, 2013|Field Schools, General|Comments Off on Life and leisure at TBI

Pillars of Truth(s) at Kalokol

A barren, rolling landscape and a ring of stones. Evidence of mysterious ritual feasts and astrological signs. The true purpose of the site long forgotten. It’s an image that conjures up ancient Celtic druids on the English heath, but ring sites aren’t unique to the early cultures of the English Isles. The Turkana Basin has [...]

By | 2017-01-04T18:05:09+00:00 March 15th, 2013|Field Schools, General|Comments Off on Pillars of Truth(s) at Kalokol

Getting to the bottom of Kangatotha

The stereotypical image of the exploratory archaeologist doesn’t include a bundle of flags and a GPS. At least not for me. Maybe it includes a whip and a few Nazi’s to fight, but a less fanciful image includes a trowel, a sieve and an exotic backdrop. Now that we had made some pretty significant discoveries [...]

By | 2017-01-04T18:05:09+00:00 March 10th, 2013|Field Schools, General|Comments Off on Getting to the bottom of Kangatotha

Survey and discovery at Kangatotha

The point of a field school is not to go to sites where the action has politely resolved itself and examine the leavings of more experienced excavators who have sorted out the story preserved underfoot. That’s what museums are for. Or maybe really well illustrated textbooks. For the Archaeology module, Dr. Alison Brooks of George [...]

By | 2017-01-04T18:05:09+00:00 March 7th, 2013|Field Schools, General|Comments Off on Survey and discovery at Kangatotha

Staking (or flagging) a claim

Where people go, they leave their trash. Since the Turkana Basin has been home to people for millions of years, there’s a lot of trash for archaeologists to pick up. The classic image of archaeology is the studious excavator sweating with trowel in hand in a meter-by-meter square trying to figure out how a piece [...]

By | 2017-01-04T18:05:10+00:00 March 5th, 2013|Field Schools, General|Comments Off on Staking (or flagging) a claim

Preparing a Paleolithic Barbeque

The Turkana Basin Field school has switched timescales again. In ecology we were learning about the rapid impact modern humans are having on our environment, particularly in the Turkana Basin. In Geology we stepped way back to take a longer view of the basin’s evolution, starting with the Cretaceous rocks of the Basin (about 70 [...]

By | 2017-01-04T18:05:10+00:00 February 28th, 2013|Field Schools, General|Comments Off on Preparing a Paleolithic Barbeque

Lothagam: Studying rivers while surviving deserts

Lothagam was too expansive, too important, and just too beautiful to be limited to a one-day visit or one blog post. As usual, the students rose with the dawn, the red rocks of Lothagam radiant with scarlet light. Quickly the nets and bedrolls were packed away, boots were laced, sunscreen applied, and we [...]

By | 2017-01-04T18:05:10+00:00 February 24th, 2013|Field Schools, General|Comments Off on Lothagam: Studying rivers while surviving deserts

Lothagam: Red Rocks and Honey Badgers

Lothagam isn’t a name that comes up very often in Physical Anthropology classes. It wasn’t a name a lot of the students on the field school knew before they came out to TBI. But over the last few weeks there was a building drumbeat: Lothagam: the lonely hill on a distant horizon. Lothagam: the oldest [...]

By | 2017-01-04T18:05:10+00:00 February 20th, 2013|Field Schools, General|Comments Off on Lothagam: Red Rocks and Honey Badgers