Encyclopedia of Global Archaeology

2014 Edition
| Editors: Claire Smith

Ethnoarchaeology: Learning from Potters in Gilund

  • Amrita Sarkar
Reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-1-4419-0465-2_1531

Introduction and Definition

Ethnoarchaeology is an ever-expanding subdiscipline within archaeology, and pottery undoubtedly gets more than its fair share of attention. But with recent social and economic trends, it can be seen that opportunities of undertaking certain kinds of ethnoarchaeological study are themselves diminishing. By an interesting coincidence, the village of Gilund in Rajasthan, NW India, was host to an important early third millennium BCE, Chalcolithic settlement of Ahar-Banas Complex (Sankalia et al 1969; Shinde & Possehl 2005), and at the same time to some of the last indigenous potters still working in the twenty-first century CE. The modern village of Gilund is located approximately 1.5 km from the archaeological site of Gilund, northeast of the modern village. The potters are locally called Kumhar. According to the potters and their family members, use of earthenware or ceramic vessels is no longer profitable because of modernization and the popularity of...
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Further Reading

  1. Kramer, C. 1997. Pottery in Rajasthan: ethnoarchaeology in two Indian cities. Washington (DC): Smithsonian Institution Press.Google Scholar
  2. Mishra, A. 2008. Beyond pots and pans: a study of Chalcolithic Balathal. New Delhi: IGRMS & Aryan Books International.Google Scholar
  3. Mishra, V.N. 2007. Rajasthan: prehistoric and early historic foundations. New Delhi: Aryan Books International.Google Scholar
  4. Saraswati, B. & N.K. Behura. 1966. Pottery techniques in peasant India (Anthropological Survey of India Memoir 13). Calcutta: Anthropological Survey of India.Google Scholar
  5. Shinde, V. 2002. The emergence, development and spread of agricultural communities in South Asia, in Y. Yasuda (ed.) The origins of pottery and agriculture: 89-115. New Delhi: Roli Books.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  • Amrita Sarkar
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of ArchaeologyDeccan College Postgraduate & Research Institute, Deemed UniversityPuneIndia