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Change and continuity in prehistoric human groups from Ribeira de Iguape Valley (São Paulo and Paraná): applying evolutionary theory to bioarchaeology and material culture

Grant number: 18/23282-5
Support type:Research Grants - Young Investigators Grants
Duration: May 01, 2019 - April 30, 2023
Field of knowledge:Humanities - Archeology
Principal Investigator:Maria Mercedes Martinez Okumura
Grantee:Maria Mercedes Martinez Okumura
Home Institution: Instituto de Biociências (IB). Universidade de São Paulo (USP). São Paulo , SP, Brazil
Assoc. researchers:Artur Chahud ; Astolfo Gomes de Mello Araujo ; Bruce Arlan Bradley ; Cláudia Inês Parellada ; Fabio Parenti ; Gabriela Sartori Mingatos ; Glauco Constantino Perez ; João Carlos Moreno de Sousa ; Kendra Ann Sirak ; Renata Pedroso de Araújo ; Ron Pinhasi


The Ribeira de Iguape Valley, located in the south of the State of São Paulo, is one of the rare Brazilian regions that presents prehistoric human occupations, preserving both human skeletal remnants and their material culture, throughout the Holocene. Therefore, this place presents itself as an ideal one for understanding long-lived human settlement, including issues of contact, identity, as well as cultural and biological change, to be explored from the analysis of both human skeletons and material culture. The aim of this project is to explore the biological and cultural diversity of the Ribeira de Iguape Valley, based on an evolutionary and interdisciplinar approach applied to both human populations and the artifacts produced by these populations. In the case of bioarchaeological analyzes (based on skeletal remains), biodistance methods based on both cranial morphology and paleogenomic analysis (ancient DNA) will be used. On the other hand, the studies of material culture, focused on the formal artifacts, will be based on theoretical approaches, such as Evolutionary Archeology and Cultural Transmission Theory. It is hoped that the union of these bioarchaeological and material culture studies can generate knowledge about prehistoric human biological and cultural diversity over time in this region. (AU)