Thursday, March 31, 2016

The Newark Earthworks: Enduring Monuments, Contested Meanings

Our book is available to order from
as of March 2016!

Considered a wonder of the ancient world, the Newark Earthworks—the gigantic geometrical mounds of earth built nearly two thousand years ago in the Ohio valley--have been a focal point for archaeologists and surveyors, researchers and scholars for almost two centuries. In their prime one of the premier pilgrimage destinations in North America, these monuments are believed to have been ceremonial centers used by ancestors of Native Americans, called the "Hopewell culture," as social gathering places, religious shrines, pilgrimage sites, and astronomical observatories. Yet much of this territory has been destroyed by the city of Newark, and the site currently "hosts" a private golf course, making it largely inaccessible to the public.

The first book-length volume devoted to the site, The Newark Earthworks reveals the magnitude and the geometric precision of what remains of the earthworks and the site’s undeniable importance to our history. Including contributions from archaeologists, historians, cultural geographers, and cartographers, as well as scholars in religious studies, legal studies, indigenous studies, and preservation studies, the book follows an interdisciplinary approach to shine light on the Newark Earthworks and argues compellingly for its designation as a World Heritage Site.

We have been so excited to share the results 
of our collaboration!

Newark Earthworks, Great Circle.

"I had spent at least thirty years researching cultures and histories of civilizations throughout the world. I had read everything I could about my Shawnee tribe: all the places they lived, wars they fought, how they dressed, how they worked, how they are, what they built, how they believed, what they valued, and how they worshiped. I knew about Serpent Mound, but I had never heard of the Newark Earthworks. I had never even heard of Newark, Ohio. I was stunned at what I saw. I was in a state of disbelief....
I could not believe it. My people, my ancestors treasured these mounds. Perhaps they did not build them, but they loved them, protected them, revered them. They knew their importance, and these earthworks were sacred to them....
That day I met a group of people who live in Ohio and feel much as I do. These are people who also find the current situation unacceptable, even as they appreciate the fact that the Newark Earthworks have been preserved when so many other earthworks have been destroyed. These people are associated with Ohio State's Newark Earthworks Center. These are the people who hosted a scholarly symposium that produced the essays in this book.
That day I made a commitment- to learn all I could about the Newark Earthworks, to teach others about them, and to preserve them. I have returned repeatedly to visit these people and to visit the site, and several of these people have visited me in Oklahoma. I have joined them in the effort to preserve the site and win the recognition that it deserves by winning inscription on the UNESCO World Heritage List.
I continue to be amazed, awe stricken, disappointed, and angry. But now I also feel hopeful."
-Chief Glenna Wallace, Eastern Shawnee Tribe of Oklahoma.

2011 Symposium Program. Newark Earthworks Center.
The Ohio State University.

We have been privileged to feature the following
 scholars in our book:
  • Glenna Wallace, Chief, Eastern Shawnee Tribe of Oklahoma
    • "Foreword"
  • Lindsay Jones, Professor, Department of Comparative Studies, The Ohio State University.
    • "Introduction: I Had No Idea! Competing Claims to Distinction at the Newark Earthworks"
  • Richard D. Shiels, Associate Professor Emeritus, Department of History, and former Director, Newark Earthworks Center, The Ohio State University.
    • "The Newark Earthworks Past and Present"
  • Bradley T. Lepper, Curator of Archaeology, Ohio History Connection.
    • The Newark Earthworks: A Monumental Engine of World Renewal
  • Ray Hively, Professor Emeritus, Department of Astronomy and Physics, Earlham College and Robert Horn, Professor Emeritus, Department of Philosophy, Earlham College
    • "The Newark Earthworks: A Grand Unification of Earth, Sky, and Mind"
  • Helaine Silverman, Professor, Department of Anthropology, and Director, Collaborative for Cultural Heritage Management and Policy, University of Illinois
    • "An Andeanist's Perspective on the Newark Earthworks"
  • Stephen H. Lekson, Curator of Archaeology, Museum of Natural History, and Professor, Department of Anthropology, University of Colorado, Boulder
    • "Hopewell and Chaco: The Consequences of Rituality"
  • Timothy Darvill, Professor of Archaeology, and Director, Center for Archaeology and Anthropology, Faculty of Science and Technology, Bournemouth University, Dorset, United Kingdom
    • "Beyond Newark: Prehistoric Ceremonial Centers and Their Cosmologies"
  • John E. Hancock, Professor Emeritus, School of Architecture and Interior Design, and Director, Center for the Electronic Reconstruction of Historical and Archaeological Sites (CERHAS), University of Cincinnati
    • "The Newark Earthworks as "Works" of Architecture"
  • Thomas Barrie, Professor, School of Architecture, North Carolina State University
    • "The Newark Earthworks as a Liminal Place: A Comparative Analysis of Hopewell-Period Burial Rituals and Mounds with a Particular Emphasis on House Symbolism"
  • Margaret Wickens Pearce, Associate Professor, Department of Geography, University of Kansas; Citizen Potawatomi
    • "The Cartographic Legacy of the Newark Earthworks"
  • Thomas S. Bremer, Associate Professor, Department of Religious Studies, Rhodes College
    • "The Modern Religiosity of the Newark Earthworks
  • Marti L. Chaatsmith, Interim Director of the Newark Earthworks Center, The Ohio State University; Comanche Nation.
    • "Native (Re)Investments in Ohio: Evictions, Earthworks Preservation, and Tribal Stewardship"
  • Mary N. MacDonald, Professor Emerita, Department of Religious Studies, Le Moyne College
    • "Whose Earthworks? Newark and Indigenous People"
  • Duane Champagne, Professor, Department of Sociology, American Indian Studies Program, and School of Law, University of California, Los Angeles; Turtle Mountain Band of Chippewa and Carole Goldberg, Jonathan D. Varat Distinguished Professor of Law, University of California, Los Angeles.
    • "The Peoples Belong to the Land: Contemporary Stewards for the Newark Earthworks
  • Greg Johnson, Associate Professor, Department of Religious Studies, University of Colorado, Boulder
    • "Caring for Depressed Cultural Sites, Hawaiian Style"
  • Winnifred Fallers Sullivan, Professor, Department of Religious Studies, Indiana University
    • "Imagining "Law-Stuff" at the Newark Earthworks"

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