Melissa Badillo

New UNLV Anthropology PhD, Dr. Melissa Badillo

Oct. 22, 2021

PhD Graduate student Melissa Badillo has successfully defended her dissertation! Her research interests include settlement studies, household archaeology and use of domestic space among the Postclassic Period Maya of her home country of Belize. Details of her project are below.

Title: Investigating Ancient Maya Late Postclassic Households and the Associated Function of the Buildings at Santa Rita Corozal, Belize

Abstract: Previous archaeological research conducted by the Corozal Postclassic Project (1979-1985) focused primarily on the Postclassic Period at the site of Santa Rita Corozal in northern Belize. Through that research, Santa Rita was demonstrated to be an important Postclassic Maya city which likely served as the capital of the ancient Maya province of Chetumal. Given the major reorganization that occurred in the Maya Lowlands at the end of the Classic Period, the assessment of a Postclassic site would demonstrate what, if any, changes in the organization of Postclassic Period sites, took place. An extensive analysis of the associated artifact assemblages of six selected household or plazuela groups at Santa Rita Corozal was undertaken to more thoroughly understand the organization of a Postclassic Period household to determine the functions served by individual buildings within these groups. This research expounds on the implied functions of household groups based on the variation between artifact distributions from selected groups at Santa Rita Corozal. This research contributes to a better understanding of ancient Maya households and the intricacies of a Late Postclassic community.