Seminar by: Professor Peter F. Biehl,
State University of New York at Buffalo, Department of Anthropology
Title: Climate and Culture Change in Neolithic Anatolia
The Effects of the 8.2k cal BP climatic event in Çatalhöyük
Place: C Block Amphitheatre, FEASS
Date and time: Thursday, June 16, 2016, at 14:00
Abstract: In the Konya Plain in Central Anatolia the transition from the Late Neolithic (LN) to the Early Chalcolithic (EC) occurs around the beginning of a period of regional drying conditions. This transitional period also roughly corresponds to the so-called 8.2k cal BP Climatic Event, which has been suggested as a possible cause for suspected drought on a wide scale, increased seasonality and fluctuating weather conditions, particularly in the Near East and North Africa between 6400 and 5800 cal BC. On the Konya Plain, the prehistoric settlement of Çatalhöyük spans the LN/EC transition before final abandonment c. 5600 cal BC, providing an ideal case study for evaluating the impact of climate and environment change on cultural systems during the seventh millennium. This lecture will present regional proxy data relating to the environment alongside results from excavations at Çatalhöyük West and discuss the possible effects of the 8.2 Event on the settlement, the Konya Plain and Anatolia.
Bio: Peter F. Biehl is Professor and Chair of the Department of Anthropology and Director of the Institute for European and Mediterranean Archaeology (IEMA) at the State University of New York at Buffalo (UB), has taught at universities in Halle, Freiburg, Cambridge and Paris, and is a trustee of the Oscar Montelius Foundation of the European Association of Archaeologists (EAA). He directs the international West Mound research project at Çatalhöyük in Turkey and has published widely on Neolithic and Copper Age Europe and Near East, archaeological method and theory, cognitive archaeology and the social meaning of visual imagery and representation, archaeology of cult and religion, museums and archaeological collections, and multimedia in archaeology. At UB he has been serving as chair of the campus-wide course evaluation committee, the budget and resources committee of the new General Education Program, and task force for inclusion and engagement of international students. He also serves on the Council on International Studies and Programs, has forged several international university partnerships, and received in 2012 the SUNY Chancellor’s Award for Internationalisation.