Christine Hastorf

Christine Hastorf

Professor |Archaeology
Office
Office: 215 ARF, Lab: 65 Kroeber
Phone
Office: 642-5457, Lab: 664-4498
Office Hours
Wednesday 10AM - 12PM (ARF office), Thursday 3:30PM - 4:30PM (65 Kroeber Hall)

Current/Future Courses

Special Interests

Food and agriculture, archaeology, political complexity, gender, paleoethnobotany; Andes.

Research

Christine Hastorf focuses on social life, political change, agricultural production, foodways, and the methodologies that lead to a better understanding of the past through the study of plant-use. She has written on agricultural production, cooking practices and what shifts in these suggest about social relations, gender relations surrounding plant use, the rise of complex society, political change and the symbolic use of plants in the legitimation of authority, fuel use and related symbolism, and plant domestication as part of social identity construction and ritual and social identity. She is particularly interested in wild plant use as compared to domesticates, identifying the stages in plant processing, their participation in social construction, and especially their participation and reflection of the symbolic and the political, in addition to the playing out of the concept of culture in the natural world.

Profile

I became involved in anthropological research concerned with long-term human-plant relationships in 1979. I have been teaching these subjects at UC Berkeley since 1994. Within archaeology, I have focused primarily on the Andean region of South America. I am involved in studying highland Andean societies, first with the later prehistory and the Inka social and political world, with a research focus in the Mantaro Valley, central Peru. Beginning in 1992 I initiated a field project on the southern shores of Lake Titicaca in Bolivia. In that project called the Taraco Archaeological Project, we are focusing on earlier temporal phases, studying the first permanent settlements up to the expansion of Tiwanaku. While most of the research has been at the Formative site of Chiripa, we have also have been excavating at a range of sites that span the time up to Tiwanaku. We are interested in studying the domestic daily world of the residents, but also of their social and ritual worlds as well as the larger interactive regional system. Between 1993 and 2001 I was involved in research at the Neolithic village site of Äatal HîyÅk, where I focused on the paleoethnobotanical side of that project.

My laboratory and methodological expertise is what is called paleoethnobotany or archaeobotany--the study of plants used by humans in the past. I direct the UCB McCown Archaeobotany Laboratory where a series of analytical projects are ongoing. Students working with me have a chance to join in on current laboratory and field projects. We include both undergraduates and graduates in both types of research. While my main work has been with macrobotanical remains, both seeds and tubers. The laboratory also has the capacity to analyze wood, phytoliths and starch samples, in addition to documenting internal cellular morphology in identification. We have several type collections covering plants from the highlands of South America and Mexico. Further I have been involved in stable isotope research and our laboratory also works with the stable isotope laboratory that is on campus here.

The projects I have been involved in focus on social life, political change, agricultural production, foodways, and the methodologies that leads us to a better understanding of the past through the study of plant-use. I have written on agricultural production, cooking practices and what shifts in these suggest about social relations, gender relations surrounding plant use, the rise of complex society, political change and the symbolic use of plants in the legitimation of authority, fuel use and related symbolism, and plant domestication as part of social identity construction and ritual and social identity. Furthermore, I have written a series of pieces on paleoethnobotanical methodology. I am particularly interested in wild plant use as compared to domesticates, identifying the stages in plant processing, their participation in social construction, and especially their participation and reflection of the symbolic and the political, in addition to the playing out of the concept of culture in the natural world.

Representative Publications

2011 Reconstructing Past Life-Ways with Plants II: Human-Environment and Human-Human Interactions (D. Pearsall and C. A. Hastorf), In Ethnobiology, edited by E. N. Anderson, Karen Adams, Deborah Pearsall, Eugene Hunn and Nancy Turner, John Wiley & Sons, Inc, Hoboken NJ.

2010 Sea Changes in Stable CommunitiesWhat Do Small Changes in Practices at Çatalhöyük and Chiripa Imply about Community Making? In Becoming Villagers, Edited by Matthew Bandy and Jake Fox, University of Arizona Press, pp. 140-161.

2010 Tradition brought to the surface: Continuity, innovation and change in the Late Formative Period, Taraco Peninsula, Bolivia, Cambridge Archaeological Journal20:157-178. (Andrew Roddick and Christine Hastorf) 

2010 The Fish of Lake Titicaca: Implications for Archaeology and Changing Ecology through Stable Isotope Analysis, Journal of Archaeological Science 37: 317-327, (Melanie J. Miller, José M. Capriles, and Christine A. Hastorf).

2009 Agriculture as Metaphor of the Andean State In Polities and Power: Archaeological Perspectives on the Landscapes of Early States edited by Steven E. Falconer and Charles L. Redman, University of Arizona Press, Tucson, pp. 52-72.

2008 Heads of State: Icons, power and politics in the ancient and modern AndesLeft Coast Press, Walnut Creek, CA, by Denise Y. Arnold and Christine A. Hastorf.

2008 The Formative Period in the Titicaca Basin, In Handbook of South American Archaeology II, edited by Helaine Silverman and William Isbell, Springer, NYC, pp. 545-561.

2006 Food, meals and daily activities: The habitus of food practices at Neolithic Çatalhöyük.  American Antiquity 71(2):283-319. By Sonya Atalay and Christine A. Hastorf).

2006 The movements of maize into Middle Horizon Tiwanaku, Bolivia, In Histories of Maize: Multidisciplinary Approaches to the Prehistory, Biogeography, Domestication, and Evolution of Maize, edited by John Staller, Robert Tykot, and Bruce Benz, Elsevier, San Diego, pp. 429-448. (Christine A. Hastorf, William T. Whitehead, Maria C. Bruno, and Melanie Wright).

2006 Domesticated Food and Society in Early Coastal Peru, In, Time and Complexity in Historical Ecology: Studies in the Neotropical Lowlands, edited byWilliam Balée and Clark Erickson, editors, Columbia University Press, New York, pp. 87-126.

2003 Community with the ancestors: Ceremonies and social memory in the Middle Formative at Chiripa, Bolivia, Journal of Anthropological Archaeology, 22(4):305-332.

Books

Archaeologists have long been interested in the onset of political differentiation, and how this can be inferred from the archaeological record. Here Christine Hastorf looks at the nature of power and political diversity in the Andean region of central Peru over a thousand-year period, from AD 200 until the fifteenth-century Inka conquest.
The Upper Mantaro Archaeological Research Project, a multiyear program undertaken from the late 1970s through the mid-1980s, is a benchmark for a new level of quality in Andean archaeological research and has brought the theory and substance of research in the region to the attention of the larger archaeological community.
The human head has had important political, ritual and symbolic meanings throughout Andean history. Scholars have spoken of captured and trophy heads, curated crania, symbolic flying heads, head imagery on pots and on stone, head-shaped vessels, and linguistic references to the head.