Terrance L. Slocum II

Position title: Graduate Student

Email: tlslocum@wisc.edu


Approximately 3500 BC, Neolithic communities in Denmark began building monumental causewayed and palisade enclosures, formed by interrupted-ditch systems, earthen banks, and wooden palisades. By applying a combination of archaeological field strategies, GIS-based analyses, and an appreciation for the social or cognitive networks guiding the selection of suitable areas for site location, I produce and evaluate probabilistic models in an attempt to identify as yet undiscovered enclosures.

To broaden the scope of previous GIS modeling, I develop the concepts of landscape affordance – the perceived properties material or ecological resources afford certain behavioral practices – as a mechanism of locational decision-making, and network translation – the punctualization, normalization and mobilization of landscape interaction – as the objective of enclosure site location and use. The Neolithic landscape was a space where certain things were expected to happen in certain places at certain times. These monumental sites were placed in suitable locations as a means of Neolithic socio-economic integration and cultural expansion. In my model, I am measuring and mapping the practice of Neolithic locational decision-making – of making monumentality happen.