Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts in Applied Archaeology



First Reader/Committee Chair

Hepp, Guy.


This study aims to refine the chronology of the burial sequence at the Early Formative Period (2000–1000 BCE) site of La Consentida in Oaxaca, Mexico. Previously, the chronology of mortuary spaces at La Consentida was supported by nine radiocarbon dates (2020–1510 cal BCE) from secure contexts, including charcoal, carbonized material from pottery, and two human bone samples processed together using R_combine to establish a single direct date for human remains at the site. This thesis study dated bioapatite from nine sets of adult human remains found in the two known mortuary contexts at La Consentida and two carbon-rich sediment samples found with a ritual deposit. Calibration and prescreening methods are suggested to correct the enamel dates, which tend to underestimate age. Securing the dates of these interred individuals enabled exploration of the mortuary space as it related to the creation and maintenance of group identity and collective memory during the initial Early Formative Period in coastal Oaxaca. More broadly, the mortuary data from La Consentida are compared to the immediate region of coastal Oaxaca and The Oaxaca Valley. The patterns discovered are used to discuss how La Consentida fits into local and regional mortuary practices.