Two related, longstanding questions in Alaskan archaeology concern the timing and cause of the cultural transition from the Arctic Small Tool tradition (ASTt) to the Norton tradition that transpired around 3000 years ago--a "significant reorientation" (Dumond, 2000:1) marked not only by technological change, but also by marine resource intensification and profound changes in settlement regimes (Anderson, 1979; Clark, 1982; Dumond, 1982, 1987, 2016; Tremayne, 2017).
Our study uses [sup.14]C datasets associated with Mid to Late Holocene contexts in Alaska to test the hypothesis that a population crash accompanied the demise of the ASTt and preceded the development of the Norton tradition.
The Arctic Small Tool tradition (ASTt), first defined by Irving (1957, 1964), represents a geographically widespread stone tool technological tradition that originated in northeastern Asia and spread into northern North America around 5000 cal BP (Dumond, 1987; Powers and Jordan, 1990; McGhee, 1996; Slaughter, 2005; Tremayne, 2015a).
By 3200 years ago, many of the distinctive traits and tool forms of the ASTt had disappeared, and over the succeeding centuries, this culture evolved into, or contributed to, the emergence of the Norton tradition (Fig.
Working with ASTT psychotherapist Amy Rakusin, I learned to treat individuals who have survived severe trauma in a way that helps them feel in control of the session and safely grounded in the present.
One night, before my appointed day at ASTT, I had a whopper of an anxiety attack.
At ASTT, I heard about the outreach work being done with refugees at the Episcopal Cathedral of the Incarnation.
A comparison to Independence I and Pre-Dorset cultures sets Saqqaq in a broader cultural context and provides the basis for an examination of cultural connections within the early ASTt in both the Eastern and Western Arctic, including its relationship with the Denbigh Flint Complex.
As a late ASTt specimen, the Dorset ladle is surprisingly similar to those of the Greenland examples, as well as a testament to the remarkable carving skills that were required to fabricate these kinds of finely crafted items.
Of course, there are abundant miniatures elsewhere in late ASTt assemblages, such as the Dorset site of Shuldham Island 9 in Labrador, though most of these specimens have been interpreted as shamanic in use (Thomson, 1985).