W4 Reflection Post

Throughout the documentary “The Hearth”, four types of households were discussed in depth giving details about those who lived within the homes, how each home was set up to run daily activities, and what type of community surrounded these households. As seen in the video, each household varied not only by how it was set up, but those who lived within and the society they were a part of. The first location that was discussed was in the Ceren community. These people have a very simple way of life. Each household was small, consisting of family members. Balancing a pot on top of three stones was the main source of cooking for these people. The contents of the pot were cooked over a fire that can be adjusted by rotating firewood under the pot. Archaeologists can see a similar process of cooking and living done by the Mayans of today. Copan was the next household explored. This household contained not only immediate family members, but extended family as well. There were three buildings surrounding a patio. Each building had its own separate purpose: sleeping, cooking, and storage. The advantage to having a larger family within the household is having more people capable of helping with daily chores to make tasks that could take all day into smaller tasks that go by much faster. Teotihuacan is a more urbanized way of living with over 2600 buildings constructed within the city. Some of the compounds within the city could hold up 30 people at a time. Production was increased to larger scales to keep up with the demand of the city. Social classes began to emerge due to lineages becoming mixed by uneven wealth distribution. Pompeii shows the largest gathering of people in a city setting of these four locations. The differences between the wealthy and the poor became quite large in this city. The difference between Pompeii and Teotihuacan is people began to be specialized in a trade, such as pottery, in order to keep up with the demand that the city required. Families no longer consist of relatives by blood but also slaves. Evidence of this is shown through artifacts and ecofacts that were preserved in the ash. The most important evidence is the foundation of buildings that were preserved allowing many artifacts to be uncovered and allow archaeologists to gain an insight on the ways of these people. Another analysis that would be interesting is technology that has been developed since the time this video was created. This technology could show where the artifacts were before construction began so archaeologists knew what they were looking at.

One thought on “W4 Reflection Post

  1. To me it was super interesting that the method use to boiling water and control the heat used by the Ceren people is still used as method by current day Mayans. It is just one example of how even thought these people were not at the state level of social development, that they had techniques that were advanced enough to survive to the present. It always surprises me to learn about ancient architecture. The idea that people thousands of years ago had the technology to build apartment buildings and other complex dwellings seems impossible. People consider this to the age of technology and modernization but to me what ancient people were able to accomplish is far more revolutionary.

Leave a Reply