J. Mark Kenoyer

Position title: George F. Dales Jr. and Barbara A. Dales Professor of Anthropology, Associate Chair, and Undergraduate Advisor

Email: jkenoyer@wisc.edu

Phone: (608) 262-5696

5402 Sewell Social Science Bldg.


Ph.D., University of California, Berkeley, 1983.
Joined UW-Madison faculty in 1985.


J. Mark Kenoyer CV

Please support any aspect of Indus Civilization research by specifying “Indus Civilization Research” for the Fund Name. If you want to make sure the funds are targeted for a specific purpose, just add a note to the donation and also email Professor Kenoyer at jkenoyer@wisc.edu

Areas of Focus

Archaeology of the Indus Civilization (Pakistan and India), Origins of Technology, Craft Specialization, Ancient Trade, Early Urbanism (Near East to China), Power and Social Relations, Gender, Warfare, Writing, Ethnoarchaeology, Experimental Archaeology, Asian Martial Arts


Dept. of Languages and Cultures of Asia


Dr. Kenoyer’s research interests include the archaeology of early urbanism and state level society, ancient technology, ornaments, textiles, pottery, lithics and metallurgy. He also is involved in ethnoarchaeology, experimental archaeology, and a wide range of archaeometric techniques and quantitative methods. His geographic areas of interest include South Asia (particularly India and Pakistan, as well as Afghanistan, Bangladesh and Sri Lanka), West Asia (Oman, UAE, Egypt), the Mediterranean (Greece and Italy), East Asia (China, Japan and Korea) and Southeast Asia.

Dr. Kenoyer has been excavating and carrying out research on the Indus Civilization since 1975 and has excavated at the site of Harappa, Pakistan since 1986. He has also worked at sites and ethnoarchaeological projects in India and more recently in China and Oman. He has a special interest in ancient technologies and crafts, socio-economic and political organization as well as religion. These interests have led him to study a broad range of cultural periods in South Asia as well as other regions of the world. As part of his research on ancient bead technologies, he has undertaken studies of collections throughout the world, with a special focus on West Asia, China, Taiwan, Japan, Korea and Southeast Asia. He was elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences in 2011. His publications include monographs on the Indus civilization as well as numerous articles, a grade school book on ancient South Asia and even a coloring book on the Indus cities for children. His work is featured on the website www.harappa.com and www.imagesofasia.com

He was Guest Curator with the Asia Society for the exhibition on the Ancient Cities of the Indus Valley Civilization, which toured the U.S. in 1998–99. He was a special consultant for the Art of the First Cities: The Third Millennium B.C. from the Mediterranean to the Indus exhibition at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York in 2002.


  • Anthro 100: General Anthropology
  • Anthro 102: Archaeology and the Prehistoric World
  • Anthro 306: Art and Archaeology (New Course)
  • Anthro 310: Topics in Archaeology: Archaeology of South Asia and the Indus Civilization; Archaeology of Old World Cities
  • Anthro 322: The Origins of Civilization
  • Anthro 338: Introduction to Prehistory and Archaeological Principles
  • Anthro 352: Ancient Technology and Invention
  • Anthro 393: Lithic Analysis in Archaeology (New Course)
  • Anthro 490: Undergraduate Seminar: Early States and Empires, Lithic Technology, Ceramics Analysis
  • Anthro 942: Seminar: Archaeology of Early States and Empires of the Old World; Lithic Technology; Ethnoarchaeology; Ancient Technology and Invention
  • Anthro 942: Research Methods

Selected Recent Publications


2005 The Ancient South Asian World, J. M. Kenoyer and Kimberly Heuston. Oxford University Press, New York.

1998 Ancient Cities of the Indus Valley Civilization. Oxford University Press and American Institute of Pakistan Studies, Karachi.

1986 Excavations at Mohenjo Daro, Pakistan: The Pottery. By G. F. Dales and J. M. Kenoyer, Univ. Museum Monograph 53. Philadelphia.

Edited Volumes

1994 From Sumer to Meluhha: Contributions to the Archaeology of South and West Asia in Memory of George F. Dales, Jr. Wisconsin Archaeology Reports, Volume 3. Department of Anthropology, U. W. Madison.

1989 Old Problems and New Perspectives in the Archaeology of South Asia.Wisconsin Archaeology Reports, Volume 2. Department of Anthropology, U. W. Madison.

Selected Articles (see CV for full list of publications)


Textiles and Trade in South Asia during the Proto-historic and Early Historic Period. In Silk. Trade and Exchange along the Silk Roads between Rome and China in Antiquity edited by Berit Hildebrandt, pp. 9-33. Oxbow Books, Oxford.


Excavations at Harappa: 1986-2010: New Insights on the Indus Civilization and Harappan Burial Traditions. By J. M. Kenoyer and R. H. Meadow. In The Companion to the South Asian Past edited by G. R. Schug and S. R. Walimbe, pp. 145-168. John Wiley and Sons, Hoboken, NJ.




The Archaeological Heritage of Pakistan: From the Palaeolithic to the Indus Civilization. In History of Pakistan, edited by Roger Long, pp. 1-90. Oxford University Press: Karachi.

The Archaeological Heritage of Pakistan: The Indo-Gangetic Tradition: Early Historic Chiefdoms and States of the Northern Subcontinent. In History of Pakistan, edited by Roger Long, pp. 91-134. Oxford University Press: Karachi.

The Indus Civilization. In The Cambridge Prehistory, edited by Colin Renfrew and Paul Bahn, (In Press). Cambridge University Press: Cambridge.

Eye Beads from the Indus Tradition: Technology, Style and Chronology. Journal of Asian Civilizations 2013 Vol. 36(2):1-23

Iconography of the Indus Unicorn: Origins and Legacy. In Connections and Complexity: New Approaches to the Archaeology of South Asia, edited by S. Abraham, P. Gullapalli, T.  Raczek, and U. Rizvi, pp. 107-125. Left Coast Press, Walnut Creek.

Connections between the Indus Valley and Mesopotamia: Preliminary Results of Strontium Isotope analyses from Harappa and Ur. J. M. Kenoyer, T. D. Price and J. Burton. Journal of Archaeological Science, Vol. 40: 2286-2297.

Marine and Riverine Trade of the Indus Cities: Strategies for Research and Interpretation. In Proceedings of the International Seminar on Marine Archaeology -3, 23-24 Aug 2007, edited by Alok Tripathi, pp.. 43-57. Indian Society for Marine Archaeology: New Delhi.

Changing Perspectives of the Indus Civilization: New Discoveries and Challenges. Puratattva Vol. 41:1-18.

Inscribed objects from Harappa Excavations: 1986-2007. In Corpus of Indus Seals and Inscriptions, Vol. 3. New Material, untraced objects, and collections outside India and Pakistan, edited by A. Parpola, B.M. Pande, P. Koskikallio. Annales Academiae Scientiarum Gennicae, B 241:1, pp. xliv-lviii. Helsinki: Suomalainen Tiedeakatemia.

Indus Seals: An overview of Iconography and Style. Ancient Sindh 9 (2006-2007): 7-30.

New Evidence for Early Silk in the Indus Civilization. By Irene Good, J. M. Kenoyer and R. H. Meadow. Archaeometry 51(3): 457-466.

The Indus Valley Mystery. by R. H. Meadow and J. M. Kenoyer. Discovering Archaeology, April 2000, pp. 38-43.