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Mesoamerican FigurinesSmall-Scale Indices of Large-Scale Social Phenomena$
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Christina T. Halperin, Katherine A. Faust, Rhonda Taube, and Aurore Giguet

Print publication date: 2009

Print ISBN-13: 9780813033303

Published to Florida Scholarship Online: September 2011

DOI: 10.5744/florida/9780813033303.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM FLORIDA SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.florida.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright University Press of Florida, 2022. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in FLASO for personal use.date: 06 July 2022

Crafting the Body Beautiful

Crafting the Body Beautiful

Performing Social Identity at Santa Isabel, Nicaragua

(p.182) (p.183) 7 Crafting the Body Beautiful
Mesoamerican Figurines

Geoffrey G. McCafferty

Sharisse D. McCafferty

University Press of Florida

In agency-based archaeology, a theoretical trend fosters a great interest in how the human body serves as a venue for negotiating and expressing social identity. Archaeological evidence may thus be used as a means for deducing relevant information when adopting a diachronic point of view. Utilizing this approach proves to be effective in looking at the various aspects of body image from the Early Postclassic Sapoá phase site's material culture found in Santa Isabel, Nicaragua. The human body, according to Erica Reisher and Kathryn Koo's review article, served as an agent and as a symbol since it was recognized as a “conduit of social meaning.” A common symbol set is thus needed to decipher the meanings of a symbolic body. This chapter attempts to examine the various aspects of the “body beautiful” in skeletal remains, dress and adornment, and representational art.

Keywords:   representational art, body beautiful, skeletal remains, dress and adornment, Santa Isabel, Nicaragua, social meaning, human body, social identity

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