Geography-Anthropology

Mica Jones '11

After graduating from the Geography-Anthropology Department at the University of Southern Maine, Mica earned his PhD from Washington University in St. Louis in May 2020 with his dissertation titled "Variability Among Later Stone Age Hunter-gatherers in Eastern Africa.”  His research focuses on changing hunter-gatherer social and economic strategies in response to large-scale terminal Pleistocene and Holocene rainfall fluctuations in eastern Africa. He uses zooarchaeological and stable isotopic data to examine hunter-gatherer behavior and ecological reorganization through time in order to better understand the local effects of regional climate changes in two contrasting eastern African contexts: the dry plains of southern Somalia and the wet Lake Victoria Basin of Uganda.  Currently, Mica is analyzing a large faunal dataset from Somalia that was excavated and exported to the U.S. in the 1980s.He has travelled to eastern Uganda to lead excavations on a newly discovered shell midden site on the shores of Lake Victoria. Aside from his dissertation research, Mica has also been involved in archaeological projects in Botswana, Uzbekistan, Kentucky, and Illinois.  He was selected for a 2-year research postdoc at the University of Oxford in the School of Archaeology starting late Summer/early Fall 2021! He will be working with Prof. Shadreck Chirikure on materials from Great Zimbabwe in southern Africa. He writes that it is his dream job! https://www.arch.ox.ac.uk/#/ While a graduate student, he also was awarded the Dean's Award for Teaching Excellence and the award states that Jones has built on his cutting-edge research and excellent communication skills to become an inspiring teacher who has gone above and beyond for his students, undertaking a large amount of extraordinary high caliber teaching at Washington University. Mica Jones  co-authored an article in the October 2017 issue of Quaternary International titled “Hunter-gatherer reliance on inselbergs, big game, and dwarf antelope at the Rifle Range Site, Buur Hakaba, southern Somalia ∼20,000−5,000 BP.”  

Read the article here.

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