Kent Lightfoot

Kent Lightfoot

Title
Professor
Department
Dept of Anthropology
Phone
(510) 642-1309
Research Expertise and Interest
California archaeology, coastal hunter-gatherers, North American archaeology, archaeology of colonialism, indigenous landscape management
Research Description

I am a North American archaeologist who has worked in New England, the American Southwest, and the Pacific Coast of North America. I specialize in the study of coastal hunter-gatherer peoples, culture contact research, and the archaeology of colonialism. Since joining the Berkeley faculty in 1987, my research has focused on Native Californian peoples and their encounters with early European explorers and colonists. I work primarily in the greater San Francisco Bay Area. My recent research projects include field work at Fort Ross State Historic Park, where a collaborative team of scholars are considering the long-term implications of multi-ethnic interactions between Russians, Native Alaskans, and Native Californians (primarily Kashaya Pomo and Coast Miwok) at Colony Ross (1812-1841). We are now in the process of working with California State Parks to develop and construct an interpretive trail that will highlight the indigenous and colonial histories of Fort Ross using archaeological studies, indigenous oral traditions, and ethnhohistorical sources. I am also involved in the reanalysis of archaeological collections housed in the Phoebe Hearst Museum of Anthropology from the impressive shell mounds of the bay area, which date back several thousand years. We are currently working with materials from the Ellis Landing Shell Mound (CA-CCO-295) and the West BerkeIey Shell Mound (CA-ALA-307). I am also participating in a collaborative research program with the Amah Mutsun Tribal Band and California State Parks on the Santa Cruz Coast that  is evaluating archaeological and ecological evidence of indigenous landscape management practices, specifically the common use of prescribed burning to enhance the biodiversity, quantity, and sustainability of useful plants and animals in local habitats.

 

Update Faculty Profile

Update your profile