Visit Your Local PBS Station PBS Home PBS Home Programs A-Z TV Schedules Watch Video Donate Shop PBS Search PBS

puffin home

Harriman Expedition Retraced

Home

 

2001 icon
2001
Expedition


2001 icon
Harriman
Retraced
Participants

2001 itinerary
2001
Expedition
Itinerary

Community Profiles
Community
Profiles

""

Aron Crowell

Arctic Anthropologist


Aron Crowell

Aron Crowell
Aron Crowell was always a fossil collector and avid reader in the natural sciences. In college he first studied geology, then switched to anthropology after a seven-month hitchhiking tour of Europe and North Africa in 1971. He did volunteer and contract work at the Department of Anthropology in the National Museum of Natural History while working on his undergraduate degree, and took advantage of opportunities to do some exciting archaeological fieldwork. This included two trips to the remote northern Labrador coast, and a year-long expedition in the Kalahari Desert of Botswana.

"In my work as an archaeologist," says Crowell, "I find it fascinating to work with historians, Alaska Native residents, and natural scientists to see coastal landscapes through many different eyes -- as places for living, as dynamic zones of glaciation and geological change, as biological environments, and as cultural landscapes where myths, place names, legends, and history tell about 10,000 years of human occupation."

After college, Crowell went to work for the National Museum of Natural History full-time, and eventually served as researcher and co-curator for Crossroads of Continents: Cultures of Siberia and Alaska, a large international traveling exhibition. He has carried out research on St. Lawrence Island and Kodiak Island, both in Alaska, while completing his Ph.D. at the University of California, Berkeley. He is currently head of Alaska programs for the Arctic Studies Center, National Museum of Natural History, Smithsonian Institution.

"My research," he says, "focuses in several areas -- the ways that indigenous peoples have adapted to coastal environments, the history of interaction between Alaska Natives and Europeans, and in the field of museum anthropology and exhibitions. As part of my present job I have enjoyed working closely with Alaska Native communities and tribal museums on collaborative projects, including a new Smithsonian exhibit called Looking Both Ways: Heritage and Identity of the Alutiiq People. I also teach anthropology and museum studies for the University of Alaska."

His recent book is an archaeological study of the first permanent Russian settlement in Alaska, built on Kodiak Island in 1784 (Archaeology and the Capitalist World System: A Study from Russian America, 1998).

(top)

 ""

 

For information on the Harriman Retraced Expedition e-mail: harriman2001@science.smith.edu

Home | 2001 Expedition | 1899 Expedition | Maps | Log | Educators and Students | Film | Century of Change | After Expedition | About This Site