Travis Stanton Joins UCR’s Anthropology Department

By Elizabeth Brown, CHASS Dean’s Office Student Intern
May 5, 2014

Archeologist Travis Stanton joined UCR’s Anthropology department this academic year as an associate professor. He previously had been department chair at the Puebla University of the Americas in Mexico for 9 years. Ever since an encounter with paleoanthropologist Richard Leakey, at a talk in the fifth grade, Stanton has had his sights set on history, which he then narrowed down to Archeology. CHASS welcomes his dedication and passion with excitement.

Professor Stanton specializes in Maya archeology and has spent 19 years researching in the Yucatan. During the summers he participates in fieldwork, and this summer he will be continuing a project in central Yucatan digging for Maya sites.  His research involves trying to understand the relationship of urbanization at Chichen Itza and surrounding cities. Stanton’s projects are focused on technological and social questions, specifically addressing problems that arrive when studying pottery, and the different interpretations that arise in relation to societal development.

Though he was on sabbatical fall quarter, Professor Stanton stated that he immediately felt accepted by the UC system, and by CHASS at UCR, finding excitement in the new adventure of teaching at UCR and in his talks with his colleagues. He taught an introductory course in Archeology during winter quarter with approximately 270 students, and though it was the largest class he had yet to teach, he felt that he “developed a good rapport with the students, and the class was smooth and energetic.” This quarter, he is teaching an upper-division lecture focused on sediment patterns and location analysis, and a graduate seminar on the archeology of violence.

Professor Stanton has also just finished editing his book called Archeology of Yucatan, which he has been working on for the past three years. It has been sent to publishing and is set for a late-summer release.

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