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Costly Signaling and the Ascendance of No-Can-Do Archaeology: A Reply to Codding and Jones

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  20 January 2017

Kelly R. McGuire
Affiliation:
Far Western Anthropological Research Group, 2727 Del Rio Place, Suite A, Davis, CA 95618 (Kelly@Farwestern.com)
William R. Hildebrandt
Affiliation:
Far Western Anthropological Research Group, 2727 Del Rio Place, Suite A, Davis, CA 95618 (Bill@Farwestern.com)
Kimberly L. Carpenter
Affiliation:
Far Western Anthropological Research Group, 2727 Del Rio Place, Suite A, Davis, CA 95618 (Kira@Farwestern.com)

Abstract

While providing a review of some of the ethnographic literature surrounding hunting and Costly Signaling Theory, Codding and Jones offer no alternative framework for how this emerging theoretical approach might be applied to the archaeological record. In their view, Costly Signaling Theory lies beyond the pale of current archaeological inquiry, or at least our conception of it. We respond to this characterization by providing a specific methodological approach, combined with several additional applications, that answer Codding and Jones's call for greater linkage between the theory and the archaeological record. Ultimately, we believe that the archaeological record, with its temporal dimension, may illuminate some of the underlying aspects of Costly Signaling Theory that are otherwise obscured by more synchronic ethnographic studies.

Résumé

Résumé

Aunque ofrecen una revisión de parte de la literatura etnográfica que rodea la caza y la teoría altruista (Costly Signaling), Codding y Jones dimiten en proponer un marco alternativo para explicar cómo este incipiente enfoque teórico puede aplicarse al registro arqueológico. Según ellos, la teoría altruista (Costly Signaling) se encuentra fuera de las normas comúnmente aceptadas de la indagación arqueológica, o al menos de nuestro concepto de ésta. Respondemos a esta caracterización a través de un enfoque metodológico específico, combinado con varias aplicaciones adicionales, que responde a la exigencia de Codding y Jones de un vínculo más estrecho entre teoría y registro arqueológico. En fin, creemos que el registro arqueológico, con su dimensión temporal, puede clarificar algunos de los aspectos subyacentes de la teoría altruista (Costly Signaling), que de otra manera permanecerían opacados por estudios sincrónicos con carácter etnográfico.

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Copyright
Copyright © The Society for American Archaeology 2007

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