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Extended Study to Mexico

SOAN 354: Fields Methods in Archaeoastronomy

On-campus class preceded by three weeks in Mexico

Director: Professor Anthony Aveni, Department of Physics and Astronomy
On-campus course: Spring 2009
Tentative travel dates: January 1 – January 21, 2009
Course credit: One credit
Prerequisites: See below

The Fields Methods in Archaeoastronomy extended study course will consist of museum visits in Mexico City, and a program of field measurements at colonial period archaeological sites in Mexico DF, Puebla, Tlaxcala, and Oaxaca with the cooperation and participation of Professor Eleanor Wake of the University of London.

This course begins in Mexico between the fall and spring terms with guided visits to and lectures on Mexico City’s National Museum of Anthropology and History, the ruins of Teotihuacan, Tenochtitlan, and other sites. Students will then participate in survey work at colonial sites near the Mexican ruins. Of particular interest is determination of the placement of embedded stones. These stones, cataloged by Professor Aveni’s colleague Eleanor Wake, were placed at select locations in 16th century colonial churches. Professors Aveni and Wake believe the placement may be preferential and that it may have something to do with encoding information about native cosmologies. Surveying the building will help test that hypothesis. Returning to campus, students will work with data collected in the field and present an oral as well as a written paper on a specialized research subject relating to the field experience.

Prerequisites

ASTR/SOAN 253, or SOAN/CLAS 240, or ASTR 130/SOAN 230, and permission of the instructor

U.S. Department of State Consular Information Sheet for Mexico