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Title: Exaggerated expectations in ancient starch research and the need for new taphonomic and authenticity criteria
Authors: Mercader, Julio
Akeju, Tolutope
Brown, Melisa
Bundala, Mariam
Collins, Matthew J.
Copeland, Les
Crowther, Alison
Dunfield, Peter
Henry, Amanda
Inwood, Jamie
Itambu, Makarius
Kim, Joong-Jae
Larter, Steve
Longo, Laura
Oldenburg, Thomas
Patalano, Robert
Sammynaiken, Ramaswami
Soto, María
Tyler, Robert
Xhauflair, Hermine
Keywords: Visual arts and music::Art history
Ancient Starch
Biomolecular Archaeology
Issue Date: 2018
Source: Mercader, J., Akeju, T., Brown, M., Bundala, M., Collins, M. J., Copeland, L., . . . & Xhauflair, H. (2018). Exaggerated expectations in ancient starch research and the need for new taphonomic and authenticity criteria. FACETS, 3(1), 777-798. doi:10.1139/facets-2017-0126
Series/Report no.: FACETS
Abstract: Ancient starch research illuminates aspects of human ecology and economic botany that drove human evolution and cultural complexity over time, with a special emphasis on past technology, diet, health, and adaptation to changing environments and socio-economic systems. However, lapses in prevailing starch research demonstrate the exaggerated expectations for the field that have been generated over the last few decades. This includes an absence of explanation for the millennial-scale survivability of a biochemically degradable polymer, and difficulties in establishing authenticity and taxonomic identification. This paper outlines new taphonomic and authenticity criteria to guide future work toward designing research programs that fully exploit the potential of ancient starch while considering growing demands from readers, editors, and reviewers that look for objective compositional identification of putatively ancient starch granules.
DOI: 10.1139/facets-2017-0126
Rights: © 2018 Mercader et al. This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License (CC BY 4.0), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author(s) and source are credited.
Fulltext Permission: open
Fulltext Availability: With Fulltext
Appears in Collections:ADM Journal Articles

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