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Peter Siegel

Chairperson, Anthropology

Dickson Hall 123
BA, University of Delaware
MA, State University of New York @ Binghamton
PhD, State University of New York @ Binghamton
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Peter E. Siegel is a New World archaeologist, specializing in pre-European cultures of eastern North America, the Caribbean, and lowland South America. His research interests include the evolution of complex society, the origins and many trajectories of social inequality, village spatial organization and the ritual use of space, heritage management, human-environmental relations, ethnoarchaeology, and lithic usewear analysis. Siegel has conducted ethnoarchaeological fieldwork among the Shipibo Indians of eastern Peru and the Waiwai and Wapisiana Indians of southern Guyana. He has directed archaeological projects across much of eastern North America and the Caribbean.

Over the past several years, with funding from the National Science Foundation and National Geographic Society, Siegel has been leading a multidisciplinary project in Caribbean paleoecology and historical ecology on islands located between Venezuela and Puerto Rico. This work builds on the success of an earlier pilot project conducted on Puerto Rico, supported by the Wenner-Gren Foundation for Anthropological Research and the Heinz Family Foundation for Latin American Archaeology.

Selected Publications:
Siegel, Peter E., John G. Jones, Deborah M. Pearsall, Nicholas P. Dunning, Pat Farrell, Neil A. Duncan, Jason H. Curtis, and Sushant K. Singh
2018 Humanizing the Landscapes of the Lesser Antilles during the Archaic. In The Archaeology of Caribbean and Circum-Caribbean Farmers (5000 BC - AD 1500), edited by Basil A. Reid, pp. 55–70. Routledge, London.

Siegel, Peter E. (ed.)
2018 Island Historical Ecology: Socionatural Landscapes of the Eastern and Southern Caribbean. Berghahn, Oxford and New York.

Siegel, Peter E., John G. Jones, Deborah M. Pearsall, Nicholas P. Dunning, Pat Farrell, Neil A. Duncan, Jason H. Curtis, and Sushant K. Singh
2015 Paleoenvironmental Evidence for First Human Colonization of the Eastern Caribbean. Quaternary Science Reviews 129: 275–295.

Siegel, Peter E., Corinne L. Hofman, Benoît Bérard, Reg Murphy, Jorge Ulloa Hung, Roberto Valcarcel Rojas, and Cheryl White
2013 Confronting Caribbean Heritage in an Archipelago of Diversity: Politics, Stakeholders, Climate Change, Natural Disasters, Tourism, and Development. Journal of Field Archaeology 38:376-390.

Siegel, Peter E.
2013 Caribbean Archaeology in Historical Perspective. In The Oxford Handbook of Caribbean Archaeology, edited by William F. Keegan, Corinne L. Hofman, and Reniel Rodríguez Ramos, pp. 21-46. Oxford University Press, Oxford.

Siegel, Peter E., and Elizabeth Righter (editors)
2011 Protecting Heritage in the Caribbean. University of Alabama Press, Tuscaloosa.

Siegel, Peter E.
2011 Competitive Polities and Territorial Expansion in the Caribbean. In Islands at the Crossroads: Migration, Seafaring, and Interaction in the Caribbean, edited by L. Antonio Curet and Mark W. Hauser, pp. 193-218. University of Alabama Press, Tuscaloosa.

Siegel, Peter E.
2010 Crossing the Caribbean Sea and Tracking Intellectual History: A Discussion. Journal of Caribbean Archaeology, Special Publication 3:156-170.

Siegel, Peter E.
2010 Continuity and Change in the Evolution of Religion and Political Organization on Pre-Columbian Puerto Rico. Journal of Anthropological Archaeology 29:302-326.

Siegel, Peter E.
2009 Curating the Past: Caribbean Archaeology at the Yale Peabody Museum of Natural History. Bulletin of the Yale Peabody Museum of Natural History 50(1):209-215.

Siegel, Peter E., Christophe Descantes, Jeffrey R. Ferguson, and Michael D. Glascock
2008 Pre-Columbian Pottery in the West Indies: Compositional Change in Context. In An Exploratory Study into the Chemical Characterization of Caribbean Ceramics, edited by Christophe Descantes, Robert J. Speakman, Michael D. Glascock, and Matthew T. Boulanger. Journal of Caribbean Archaeology, Special Publication 2: 25-44.

Siegel, Peter E.
2008 Contested Places and Places of Contest: The Evolution of Social Power and Ceremonial Space in Prehistoric Puerto Rico. Reprinted in An Archaeological Perspective on Ritual, Religion, and Ideology, anthology compiled by Gordon F. M. Rakita and Jane E. Buikstra, pp. 187-216. Society for American Archaeology. The SAA Press, Washington, D.C.

Siegel, Peter E., John G. Jones, Deborah M. Pearsall, and Daniel P. Wagner
2005 Environmental and Cultural Correlates in the West Indies: A View from Puerto Rico. In Ancient Borinquen: Archaeology and Ethnohistory of Native Puerto Rico, edited by Peter E. Siegel, pp. 88-121. University of Alabama Press, Tuscaloosa.

Siegel, Peter E.
2005 Multiple Visions of an Island’s Past and Some Thoughts for Future Directions in Puerto Rican Prehistory. In Ancient Borinquen: Archaeology and Ethnohistory of Native Puerto Rico, edited by Peter E. Siegel, pp. 353-363. University of Alabama Press, Tuscaloosa.

Siegel, Peter E.
2004 What Happened After A.D. 600 on Puerto Rico? Corporate Groups, Population Restructuring, and Post-Saladoid Social Changes. In Late Ceramic Age Societies in the Eastern Caribbean, edited by André Delpuech and Corinne Hofman, pp. 87-100. Paris Monographs in American Archaeology No. 14. BAR International Series No. 1273. Archaeopress, Oxford.

Anderson-Córdova, Karen F., Mark R. Barnes, and Peter E. Siegel
2004 Interaction between the Caribbean and Eastern North America in the Colonial Period. In An Annales Approach to Contact-Era Archaeology, edited by Michael Klein. Journal of Middle Atlantic Archaeology 20:29-34.

Siegel, Peter E., Robert G. Kingsley, and Tod L. Benedict
2001 Oberly Island: Trend and Tradition in the Lower Lehigh Valley. Pennsylvania Archaeologist 71(2):16-59.

Siegel, Peter E.
1996 An Interview with Irving Rouse. Current Anthropology 37:671-689.

Siegel, Peter E.
1996 Ideology and Culture Change in Prehistoric Puerto Rico: A View from the Community. Journal of Field Archaeology 23:313-333.

Siegel, Peter E.
1995 The Archaeology of Community Organization in the Tropical Lowlands: A Case Study from Puerto Rico. In Archaeology in the American Tropics: Current Analytical Methods and Applications, edited by Peter W. Stahl, pp. 42-65. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge.

Siegel, Peter E., and Kenneth P. Severin
1993 The First Documented Prehistoric Gold-Copper Alloy Artefact from the West Indies. Journal of Archaeological Science 20:67-79.

Siegel, Peter E.
1991 On the Antillean Connection for the Introduction of Cultigens into Eastern North America. Current Anthropology 32:332-334.

Siegel, Peter E.
1991 Migration Research in Saladoid Archaeology: A Review. The Florida Anthropologist 44(1):79-91.

Siegel, Peter E.
1990 Proyecto arqueológico de Maisabel. Patrimonio: Boletín de la Oficina Estatal de Preservación Histórica 1(7):7-10.

Siegel, Peter E.
1990 Demographic and Architectural Retrodiction: An Ethnoarchaeological Case Study in the South American Tropical Lowlands. Latin American Antiquity 1:319-346.

Siegel, Peter E.
1989 Site Structure, Demography, and Social Complexity in the Early Ceramic Age of the Caribbean. In Early Ceramic Population Lifeways and Adaptive Strategies in the Caribbean, edited by Peter E. Siegel, pp. 193-245. BAR International Series No. 506. British Archaeological Reports, Oxford.

Siegel, Peter E.
1986 More on Functional Variability within an Assemblage of Endscrapers: A Reply to Hayden and Bamforth. Lithic Technology 15:71-78.

Siegel, Peter E., and Peter G. Roe
1986 Shipibo Archaeo-Ethnography: Site Formation Processes and Archaeological Interpretation. World Archaeology 18:96-115.

Siegel, Peter E.
1985 Edge Angle as a Functional Indicator: A Test. Lithic Technology 14:90-94.

Siegel, Peter E.
1984 Functional Variability within an Assemblage of Endscrapers. Lithic Technology 13:35-51.

Roe, Peter G., and Peter E. Siegel
1982 The Life History of a Shipibo Compound: Ethnoarchaeology in the Peruvian Montaña. Journal of Archaeology and Anthropology 5(2):94-118.


Pre-Columbian archaeology of eastern North America, Caribbean, lowland South America
Lithic analysis
Complex society
Religion and use of ritual space
Archaeological heritage management
Historical ecology


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