May
12
2005

Catalhoyuk, The Seeds of Civilization

This month's Smithsonian magazine has an article about Çatalhöyük (pronounced "Chah-tahl-hew-yook").
Why did humans first turn from nomadic wandering to villages and togetherness? The answer may lie in a 9,500-year-old settlement in central Turkey. Archaeologist Ian Hodder says:

"The formation of the first communities was a major turning point in humanity's development, and the people of Çatalhöyük seem to have pushed the idea to an extreme. But we are still left with the question of why they would bother to come together in such numbers in the first place."

Hodder believes that Çatalhöyük's early settlers valued spirituality and artistic expression so highly that they located their village in the best place to pursue them.

Your Comments, Thoughts, Questions, Ideas

bryan kennedy's picture

Hey ARTiFactor, it's great that you wrote about this. The Science Museum of Minnesota has a long history with the Çatalhöyük Research Project. We developed a whole exhibit about the research there and the process of archaeology. You can find out a lot more about this on the Mysteries of Çatalhöyük website. To develop the exhibit and website, several members of the Science Museum staff visited the dig site in Turkey. Watch some of their discussions with Ian Hodder and other researchers.
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bryan kennedy
Science Buzz Site Admin

posted on Thu, 05/12/2005 - 1:41pm

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