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Jeffrey R. Parsons Lecture Series

Jeffrey R. Parsons, 1939 - 2021

In 2005, a fund was created in honor of the retirement of Latin American Curator Jeffrey R. Parsons to support expenses related to the Museum of Anthropological Archaeology’s weekly lecture series, visiting speakers, symposia, student-sponsored lecturers, and co-sponsored lectures with other units. Every year, UMMAA selects and invites a speaker to present the Jeffrey R. Parsons Lecture.

Jeffrey R. Parsons received his B.S. (1961) from the Pennsylvania State University and his M.A. (1963) and Ph.D. (1966) from the University of Michigan. He joined the University of Michigan in 1966, and served as the Museum’s curator of Latin American Archaeology and a professor in the Department of Anthropology until his retirement from the University in 2006. Parsons served as director of the Museum of Anthropology from 1983 to 1986. Following his tenure as director—as curator and as professor emeritus—Jeff continued to publish on his archaeological and ethnographic research in Peru and Mexico. In 2021, at the age of 81, Jeff passed away. Read his memorial here, and watch the video his Peruvian colleagues created as a tribute to his archaeological work and to honor his memory here

Past lectures:

2022-23: Dr. Shane Miller, Associate Professor in the Department of Anthropology and Middle Eastern Cultures at.Mississippi State University: Self-Destructive Zones:
What Archaeology Tells Us about the Future Risks of Floods, Forest Fires, and
Droughts in Southern Appalachia
. Video link here

2021-22: Dr. Ora Marek-Martinez, Director, Native American Cultural Center, and Assistant Professor of Anthropology at Northern Arizona University: Refusal of Colonialism
in Nihookaa Dine'e' Bila'Ashdla'ii Archaeology: Creating Pathways to Indigenous Futures
. Video link here

2019:  Dr. Junko Habu, Professor of Anthropology, University of California, Berkeley: Current Issues in Jomon Archaeology

2018: Dr. Christina Conlee, Professor of Anthropology, University of California Santa Barbara: Beyond the Lines: Exploring Long-Term Cultural Dynamics in Nasca, Peru

2017: Dr. David Hurst Thomas, American Museum of Natural History: Romance
and Reality in the Mythical Mission Past: How we found the Long-lost Spanish
Mission on St. Catherines Island

2016: Dr. Liz Arkush, University of Pittsburgh: Transformations of warfare in the
pre-Columbian Andes: warrior kings, hillfort communities, and conquest empires

2015: Dr. Robert L. Kelly, University of Wyoming: Radiocarbon Dates, Hunter-Gatherer Population Growth, Climate Change, Warfare, and High altitude Archaeology in Wyoming

2014: Dr. Kenneth M. Ames, Portland State University: What's up on the Northwest Coast? Revising\Rethinking Complex Hunter-Gatherers