Archaeological research is currently hampered by a lack of high quality illustrations and a decentralization of data. The New World Figurine Project will overcome both problems for figurines.
Figurines, like many other artifacts classified as "minor," are often neglected in archaeological research. But if the objective of archaeology is to resurrect, in the most complete manner possible, the culture we are excavating from the earth, then all excavated artifacts are necessary to answer questions of process in prehistory. From its inception in 1987, the New World Figurine Project has been designed to compile and publish comprehensive illustrated data on New World figurines, so that researchers may have data for comparative purposes.
In addition, the project promises to serve as a vehicle for discussing theories of cultural process. Many of the authors go beyond the primary goal of description to discuss issues relevant to the cultures or time periods associated with the figurines. An ultimate objective is to trace cultural interactions that cannot be established with other artifact categories. As future volumes are published, the editor and authors hope to amass enough data to make this possible. Terry Stoker, ed., 1991, 165 pp., Hard Cover, FARMS Research Press