The Cahokia Mound 72-Sub 1 Burials as Collective Representation

  • Brown J
  • 19


    Mendeley users who have this article in their library.
  • N/A


    Citations of this article.


Contrary to the usual view that the famous 'beaded burial" exemplified elite social status in early Cahokian society, this paper argues that it and all of the burials following the initial series of internments are not 'status defining' in the usual sense. An argument is presented to show how the dead were chosen to enact public ceremony with a collective, community-wide purpose. This purpose is encoded in teh arrangement of burials, treatment of the dead and the kind and placements of artifacts. Individually these burials include the recent dead, the old dead formed of disarticulated remains, and the sacrificial dead. The dead can be thought of as re-enacting a cosmic narrative in which the 'beaded burial' is the central hero/savior of the narrative. This iconically driven use of the dead contrasts with another contemporary treatment of teh adult dead in which bundles were created from bones stored in charnel houses.

Author-supplied keywords

  • Cahokia
  • collective representation
  • mortuary behavior

Get free article suggestions today

Mendeley saves you time finding and organizing research

Sign up here
Already have an account ?Sign in

Find this document

There are no full text links


  • James A Brown

Cite this document

Choose a citation style from the tabs below

Save time finding and organizing research with Mendeley

Sign up for free