Ph.D. UC Santa Cruz, 2009
Historical archaeology, labor, hunter-gatherers, economic anthropology, social inequality, identity, zooarchaeology, landscape, quantitative methods
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Charlotte Sunseri holds a Ph.D. from the University of California, Santa Cruz. She is an anthropological archaeologist with expertise in zooarchaeological and GIS-based spatial analyses. Her specialties include California hunter-gather archaeology and historical archaeology of mining communities of the late nineteenth and twentieth centuries.
Dr. Sunseri's research of ancient coastal groups of California has focused on economics associated with the emergence of social inequality along the Monterey Bay. Her current project investigates the intertwining of labor, power, and identity in a late nineteenth century milling community of the eastern Sierra Nevada. Her investigation hinges on the articulation of Chinese, Paiute, and Euro-Americans in a socioracial hierarchy and explores how ethnic and class-based identity construction and expression among laborers contributed to community cohesion or tensions in post-gold rush towns. Most broadly, her research interests include social inequality and identity, industry and labor, material evaluation, cultural landscapes, and economic anthropology.
Before joining the SJSU Anthropology Department, Dr. Sunseri taught courses at the University of California, Berkeley, San Francisco State University, and the University of California, Santa Cruz where she received an award in recognition of her teaching. As a Clogg Fellow at the University of Michigan, Dr. Sunseri was part of the Inter-university Consortium for Political and Social Research. Her research has been funded by the STEPS-UC Santa Cruz Award for Innovation in Environmental Research and the National Science Foundation. She has worked as a professional archaeologist in the San Francisco Bay area and at sites throughout California, Nevada, Utah, New Mexico, Texas, Missouri, Illinois, and Mali, West Africa. Invitations for her to present her research in both public and academic forums have included the Stanford Archaeology Center, UC-Santa Cruz Anthropology Department, Society for American Archaeology, Society for California Archaeology, Sacramento Archaeological Society, and Texas Archaeological Society.
Her most recent publication appears in Animals and Inequality in the Ancient World (University of Colorado Press) as well as numerous technical reports on the archaeology of California, Nevada, Utah, and Texas sites.