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ASU Electronic Theses and Dissertations


This collection includes most of the ASU Theses and Dissertations from 2011 to present. ASU Theses and Dissertations are available in downloadable PDF format; however, a small percentage of items are under embargo. Information about the dissertations/theses includes degree information, committee members, an abstract, supporting data or media.

In addition to the electronic theses found in the ASU Digital Repository, ASU Theses and Dissertations can be found in the ASU Library Catalog.

Dissertations and Theses granted by Arizona State University are archived and made available through a joint effort of the ASU Graduate College and the ASU Libraries. For more information or questions about this collection contact or visit the Digital Repository ETD Library Guide or contact the ASU Graduate College at gradformat@asu.edu.


Status
  • Public
Subject
Date Range
2010 2019


This dissertation focuses on the diversity inherent to the process of social community construction. Building upon previous archaeological and bioarchaeological studies of community identities, the current project emphasizes the need for consideration of the impact of diversity on community identity formation in the past and illustrates the utility of a bioarchaeological approach for undertaking this task. Three specific aspects of community formation are addressed: (1) the relationship between symbolic community boundaries and geographic space, (2) the influence of diverse discourses of intra-community sub-groups on community formation, and (3) the negotiation of community boundaries by outsiders. To investigate these aspects of …

Contributors
Marsteller, Sara Jane, Knudson, Kelly J, Buikstra, Jane E, et al.
Created Date
2015

Studies of ancient pathogens are moving beyond simple confirmatory analysis of diseased bone; bioarchaeologists and ancient geneticists are posing nuanced questions and utilizing novel methods capable of confronting the debates surrounding pathogen origins and evolution, and the relationships between humans and disease in the past. This dissertation examines two ancient human diseases through molecular and bioarchaeological lines of evidence, relying on techniques in paleogenetics and phylogenetics to detect, isolate, sequence and analyze ancient and modern pathogen DNA within an evolutionary framework. Specifically this research addresses outstanding issues regarding a) the evolution, origin and phylogenetic placement of the pathogen causing skeletal …

Contributors
Harkins, Kelly Marie, Buikstra, Jane E, Stone, Anne C, et al.
Created Date
2014

This research explores how people's relationships with the spirits of the dead are embedded in political histories. It addresses the ways in which certain spirits were integral "inhabitants" of two social environments with disparate political traditions. Using the prehistoric mortuary record, I investigate the spirits and their involvement in socio-political affairs in the Prehispanic American Southeast and Southwest. Foremost, I construct a framework to characterize particular social identities for the spirits. Ancestors are select, potent beings who are capable of wielding considerable agency. Ancestral spirits are generic beings who are infrequently active among the living and who can exercise agency …

Contributors
Thompson, Mason Scott, Buikstra, Jane E, Kintigh, Keith W, et al.
Created Date
2014

Exchange is fundamental to human society, and anthropologists have long documented the large size and complexity of exchange systems in a range of societies. Recent work on the banking system of today's world suggests that complex exchange systems may become systemically fragile and in some types of complex exchange systems that involve feedbacks there exists a fundamental trade-off between robustness (stability) and systemic fragility. These properties may be observable in the archaeological record as well. In southern Arizona, the Hohokam system involved market-based exchange of large quantities of goods (including corn, pottery, stone, and shell) across southern Arizona and beyond, …

Contributors
Merrill, Michael Lee, Hegmon, Michelle, Anderies, John M, et al.
Created Date
2014

My dissertation contributes to a body of knowledge useful for understanding the evolution of subsistence economies based on agriculture from those based on hunting and gathering, as well as the development of formal rules and norms of territorial ownership in hunter-gatherer societies. My research specifically combines simple formal and conceptual models with the empirical analysis of large ethnographic and environmental data sets to study feedback processes in coupled forager-resource systems. I use the formal and conceptual models of forager-resource systems as tools that aid in the development of two alternative arguments that may explain the adoption of food production and …

Contributors
Freeman, Jacob C., Anderies, John M, Nelson, Margaret C, et al.
Created Date
2014

This study evaluates five different hypotheses potentially accounting for the prehistoric movement of vesicular basalt during the Hohokam occupation of the Salt-Gila Basin (ca. A.D. 700-1450): 1) direct procurement; 2) direct exchange; 3) down-the-line exchange; 4) market exchange; and 5) elite-controlled exchange. The plausibility of each hypothesis is assessed by examining the relative frequency of different vesicular basalt source types at sites as related to the geographic distance from their source; intra-site variance in vesicular basalt source type diversity; inter-site variance in vesicular basalt source type diversity; and temporal specificity and continuity in source preference. The study sample is comprised …

Contributors
Fertelmes, Craig Martin, Abbott, David R, Simon, Arleyn W, et al.
Created Date
2014

Ancient Mediterranean cultures incorporated equine iconography into their artistic repertoires, demonstrating the horse's importance not only as a beast of burden and war, but also as a visual symbol of wealth and prestige. Interaction between man and horse appears in clay as early as the third millennium BC, along with the early development of ancient Near Eastern cultures. Tactical evolution in Near Eastern warfare, particularly the eclipse of chariot forces by the rise of cavalry, coincided with the emergence of equestrian terracotta figurines and facilitated the popularity of horse and rider imagery. Cyprus' many city-kingdoms have yielded a vast, coroplastic …

Contributors
Walter, Chelsea, Serwint, Nancy, Sweeney, Gray, et al.
Created Date
2014

Irrigation agriculture has been heralded as the solution to feeding the world's growing population. To this end, irrigation agriculture is both extensifying and intensifying in arid regions across the world in an effort to create highly productive agricultural systems. Over one third of modern irrigated fields, however, show signs of serious soil degradation, including salinization and waterlogging, which threaten the productivity of these fields and the world's food supply. Surprisingly, little ecological data on agricultural soils have been collected to understand and address these problems. How, then, can expanding and intensifying modern irrigation systems remain agriculturally productive for the long-term? …

Contributors
Strawhacker, Colleen, Spielmann, Katherine A, Hall, Sharon J, et al.
Created Date
2013

In this dissertation I argue that medieval peoples used a different style of identity from those applied to them by later scholarship and question the relevance of applying modern terms for identity groups (e.g., ethnicity or nationality) to the description of medieval social units. I propose we think of identity as a social construct comprised of three articulating facets, which I call: form, aspect, and definition. The form of identity is its manifestation in behavior and symbolic markers; its aspect is the perception of these forms by people; and its definition is the combination of these perceptions into a social …

Contributors
Roberts, Christopher Matthew, Hegmon, Michelle, Bjork, Robert, et al.
Created Date
2013

This research addresses human adaptive decisions made at the Pleistocene-Holocene transition - the transition from the Last Glacial Maximum (LGM) to the climate regime in which humankind now lives - in the Mediterranean region of southeast Spain. Although on a geological time scale the Pleistocene-Holocene transition is the latest in a series of widespread environmental transformations due to glacial-interglacial cycles, it is the only one for which we have a record of the response by modern humans. Mediterranean Spain lay outside the refugium areas of late Pleistocene Europe, in which advancing ice sheets limited the land available for subsistence and …

Contributors
Schmich, Steven, Clark, Geoffrey A, Barton, Michael, et al.
Created Date
2013