Survey in the Montecristi province
In February 2015 a 7 month fieldwork period started at the coast of the Montecristi province.
A passion for collecting
The Caribbean is frequently described as a region of diversity and multiplicity, where peoples, histories, and traditions intertwine. After having spent three weeks visiting museums and collections in Trinidad and Tobago, Puerto Rico, and the Dominican Republic, I would like to add another item to the list: The diversity of museums.
In the Dominican Republic, the official directory of the Museums Association of the Caribbean has listed 48 museums. There are many more throughout the island, and together with fellow NEXUS team members Csilla Ariese and Arlene Alvarez I have had the chance to visit many of them. In Santo Domingo alone, from the monumental national public museums at the Plaza de la Cultura – such as the Museo del Hombre Dominicano – to the newly opened Museo Memorial de la Resistencia Dominicana at the otherwise tourist-oriented Zona Colonial, there is something for every taste, a broad range of possibilities for everyone who is interest in the archaeology, history, arts, and cultures of this Caribbean island.
The El Flaco excavation in the Summer of 2014, Valverde, Dominican Republic
A short video documents and explains the different tasks performed to excavate of an Amerindian settlement in the northern Dominican Republic, from the actual excavation to documenting the finds and reaching out to the people of Cruce de Guayacanes.
NEXUS blog published in the Museum Blog Book
For International Museum Day in 2015, Csilla Ariese-Vandemeulebroucke wrote a blog on the NEXUS website about how Caribbean museums contribute to a more sustainable society. Since then, this blog post was picked up and selected for publication in the Museum Blog Book, a new glossy publication that bundles 77 blog posts.
A day-trip out of school, learning in informal educational settings – It’s not just fun, it’s outdoor learning!
Thinking back to primary school, do you remember the times you went on a school trip? Was this a nice experience? Was it a day full of exciting activities? These kind of activities are usually only planned once in a while by teachers for their students. Generally, the intention is to provide the students with practical experience that will help them better understand a certain subject matter. This said, from my own experience during my training as a teacher, students commonly used to say that they would love to go on field trips, museum visits and excursions more often. Mostly, they simply want to do something different than the daily school routine.
UAV flight video over UNESCO world heritage sites in Northern Haiti
A by-product of the archaeological survey in Northern Haiti by Sony Joseph Jean and Till Sonnemann, the UAV flight video shows aerial views of the Haitian landscape, e.g. the spectacular Citadelle La Ferrière and Sans-Souci Palace, built under King Henri Christophe (1767-1820) after the successful Haitian revolution against the French in 1804.
Why you should not brush your teeth
Just moments after you brush your teeth, the surfaces of your teeth will be colonized by bacteria. This colonization results in a biofilm, which is a very thin layer on the surface of your teeth, also known as dental plaque. In the presence of saliva, which contains necessary minerals, this plaque begins to calcify. The periodic mineralization results in a layered cement-like substance, which is dental calculus (see figure).
The study of ceramics using various approaches
Ceramics are among one of the most common objects to be found in archaeological sites around the world, including the Caribbean.Owing to their abundance, ceramics have long been used by Caribbean archaeologists to establish the time frame of particular settlement. This can be done by studying mostly the style and decoration of ceramics. However, such focus on style, decoration, and chronology overshadows the importance of other aspects of ceramic (e.g. composition, and technical practices etc.) and what they can tell us.
MOU signing between Leiden University and Grenada
On Wednesday, the 21st of January 2015, Professor Corinne Hofman of Leiden University and the Ministry of Culture, Grenada National Museum, Carriacou Historical Society and Museum, and the Grenada National Trust signed an MOU, agreeing scientific and cultural cooperation as part of the “Nexus 1492 ERC-synergy” project.
From Ball Court to Ball Park – A Story of two Faiths
Having had the opportunity to visit Baltimore’s Camden Yards this summer, and seeing the Orioles finally succumb to the Kansas City Chiefs, preventing their first entry to the World Series in over 30 years, I became aware of baseball fans’ commitment to their team. In the Dominican Republic, the engagement with “béisbol” is more than that, its pure devotion, a religion second only to Catholicism (Trivia question: which is the only country that has a bible in its flag? Bingo!). La pelota is worshipped on Sundays, the players are the priests, and Sammy Sosa is a demi-god (and more than in regards of the golden liquid that is flowing through his veins. The sport dominates the language, the culture, the daily routine.