From cave to castle, the house has been a fundamental part of life for humans throughout the ages. UNM professor and anthropologist James L. Boone will discuss A Natural History of Houses Thursday, Jan. 30, as part of the Ancestors Lectures hosted by the Maxwell Museum of Anthropology and the Department of Anthropology. The event is free and open to the public at Hibben Hall room 105. 

“As an anthropologist, I’m interested in the ways in which the household, with its spatial and economic focus around the hearth as a source of heat, light, and energy for cooking, and the transformation of materials such as stone or metal for technology like tools or weapons, is a fundamental unit of human social organization. It has evolutionary origins with foragers deep in the Paleolithic past,” Boone explained. 

A Natural History of Houses · James L. Boone
Thursday, January 30, 2020 · 7:30 p.m. · Hibben Hall room 105 · Free and open to a

“Domestication—a term meaning ‘to bring into the house’– is central to the formation and maintenance of this ur-institution. I’ll discuss ways in which the house is a kind of institutional template and fundamental building block of civilization and the social unit by which agency, identity, wealth, and abundance is generated and expressed within communities,” he continued.

The Ancestors Lectures is an annual presentation sponsored by the Maxwell Museum presenting research from the Evolutionary Anthropology faculty from the UNM Department of Anthropology. The first lecture ever in the series was by Jean Auel, best known for her Earth's Children books, including The Clan of the Cave Bear.

Boone is professor of Anthropology at UNM. His interests are in the evolution of complex societies and evolutionary ecology with a particular focus on the energetics of conspicuous consumption.

Hibben Hall is located on Redondo W Drive just north of the intersection of Martin Luther King Jr Avenue NE and University Boulevard.

For more information about the Ancestors Lectures or Maxwell Museum of Anthropology, call 277-4405 or go the museum website.