Scott Hutson

  • Professor
  • Anthropology
  • Latin American, Caribbean, and Latino Studies
208 Lafferty Hall
859 257-9642
Research Interests:

Ph.D., California-Berkeley, 2004


My three most advanced PhD candidates are Gavin Davies (NSF Dissertation Improvement Grant for research at Lake Atitlan, Guatemala), Barry Kidder (NSF Dissertation Improvement Grant for research in Yucatan, Mexico), and Céline Lamb (Wenner Gren grant for research in Yucatan, Mexico)

Since 1996, I have been doing archaeology in the Maya area, working briefly in Belize and Guatemala before settling down in Yucatan, Mexico, in 1998. Prior to focusing on eastern Mesoamerica, I found my footing as an archaeologist through several projects in Oaxaca, Mexico. I currently direct the Ucí-Cansahcab Regional Integration Project (UCRIP), which I started in 2008.

The UCRIP explores the ways in which the integration of several archaeological sites in the Northern Maya lowlands transformed political, economic, social, and ritual life. Integration took place at the beginning of the Classic period (250-550 AD) when an 18km long stone causeway connected the regional center of Ucí with the site of Cansahcab as well as other sites in between. We are currently focusing on large and small sites along the path of the causeway as well as sites not connected by the causeway. We seek to gauge both the impact of regional integration on the people of these hinterland sites as well as the ways in which these people recursively shaped the process of integration. By investigating sites both on and off the causeway, this research assesses the degree to which regional integration penetrated the hinterlands, thus providing a sense of the scale and intensity of the historical transformation. Investigating both large and small sites highlights the degree to which more powerful and less powerful local interest groups may have negotiated different terms of interaction, introducing unevenness and heterogeneity in the process of integration.

Archaeology in the vicinity of Ucí builds on research from a second project in Yucatan that I co-directed with Travis Stanton and Aline Magnoni (in 2007 and 2008). This research focused on settlement dynamics along the 100km sacbe connecting Yaxuna and Coba, and has permitted discussions of memory and archaeological semiotics.

While working at the site of Chunchucmil, Yucatan, between 1998 and 2006, I developed an interest in dwelling and identity. Getting at these processes in the archaeological record requires close attention to daily practices and their spatial contexts. The many years of interdisciplinary fieldwork and analysis that my colleagues and I devoted to Chunchucmil has contributed to relational theories of subjectivity in archaeology and to a reorientation of our understanding of Classic period Maya political economies.

Other research topics that I have written about include the history of Maya archaeology, the disciplinary structures that shape archaeologists as subjects (a topic I have studied through analysis of citations), the processes of subjectification as inferred from children's graffiti at Tikal, spiritual transformations in rave subcultures, and the role that archaeological ruins play in the identity of contemporary farmers in Yucatan.


Political and Social Organization, Household Archaeology, Statistics, Identity, Practice Theory, Mesoamerica, Public Archaeology, Soil Chemistry.

Courses Taught at UK

  • ANT 102: Archeaology: Mysteries and Controversies
  • ANT 240: Introduction to Archaeology
  • ANT 242: Origins of New World Civilization
  • ANT 350: The Ancient Maya
  • ANT 360: Statistics in Anthropology
  • ANT 650: Archaeological Theory
  • ANT 652: Demographic Archaeology
  • ANT 770: Space, Place and Landscape
  • ANT 770: Archaeology of Identity
  • ANT 770: Material Culture
Selected Publications: 

2018 Hutson, Scott R., Céline Lamb, and David Medina, “Political Engagement in Household Ritual among the Maya of Yucatan.” In Beyond Integration: Religion and Politics in the Ancient Americas, edited by Stacy Barber and Arthur Joyce, pp. 165-188. Routledge, London.

2018, Hutson, Scott R., Derby Festival Marathon, Louisville, KY, 3:18:35.

2017 Hutson, Scott R. (editor), Ancient Maya Commerce: Multidisciplinary Research at Chunchucmil. University Press of Colorado, Boulder

2016 Hutson, Scott R., Ancient Urban Maya: Neighborhoods, Inequality and Built Form. University Press of Florida, Gainesville

2016 Hutson, Scott R., Barry Kidder, Celine Lamb, Daniel Vallejo-Cáliz, and Jacob Welch, “Small Buildings and Small Budgets: Making LiDAR Work in Northern Yucatan, Mexico.” Advances in Archaeological Practice 4(3):268-83.

2016 Beach, Timothy, Sheryl Luzzadder-Beach, Scott R. Hutson, Samantha Krause, “Sky-earth, Lake-sea: Climate and Water in Maya History and Landscape.” Antiquity 90:426-442

2015 Hutson, Scott R., “Adapting LiDAR data for regional variation in the tropics: a case study from the Northern Maya Lowlands.” Journal of Archaeological Science Reports 4:252-263.

2015 Coronel, Eric, Scott R. Hutson, Aline Magnoni, Chris Balzotti, Austin Ulmer, and Richard Terry, 2015, “Geochemical Analysis of Late Classic and Post Classic Maya Marketplace Activities at the Plazas of Cobá, Mexico.” Journal of Field Archaeology 40(1):89-109.

2015 Hutson, Scott R., “Method and Theory for an Archaeology of Age.” In The Archaeology of Childhood: Interdisciplinary Perspectives on an Archaeological Enigma, edited by Guner Coskunsu, pp. 37-52. SUNY Press, Albany.

2015 Hutson, Scott R., Iliana Ancona Aragón, Miguel Covarrubias Reyna, Zachary Larsen, Katie Lukach, Shannon E. Plank, Richard E. Terry and Willem Vanessendelft, “A Historical Processual Approach to Continuity and Change in Classic and Postclassic Yucatan.” In Beyond Collapse: Archaeological Perspectives in Resilience, Revitalization and Reorganization in Complex Societies, edited by Ronald Falseit, pp. 124-146. Southern Illinois University Press, Carbondale.

2015 Hutson, Scott R., and Gavin Davies, “How Material Culture Acted on the Ancient Maya of Yucatan, Mexico.” In The Materiality of Everyday Life, edited by Lisa Overholtzer and Cynthia Robin, pp. 10-26. Archaeological Papers of the American Anthropological Association, Washington, DC.

2014 Hutson, Scott R., and Cynthia Robin (organizers), Households Make History in Ancient Mesoamerica. Special Section of Ancient Mesoamerica, Cambridge University Press.

2014 Hutson, Scott R., and Jacob Welch, "Sacred Landscapes and Building Practices at Ucí, Kancab, and Ucanha, Yucatan, Mexico.” Ancient Mesoamerica 25(2):421-439.

2014 Magnoni, A., T. Stanton and S. R. Hutson, "The Importance of Place and Memory in the Maya Past: The Variable Appropriation of Ancient Settlement at Chunchucmil and Yaxuna, Yucatan, during the Terminal Classic. In The Archaeology of Yucatan, edited by T. Stanton, pp. 457-466. Archaeopress, Oxford.

2014 Hutson, Scott R., "Regional Integration Involving Uci and its Causeway." In The Archaeology of Yucatan, edited by T. Stanton, pp. 243-253. Archaeopress, Oxford.

2014 Magnoni, Aline, Traci Ardren, Scott R. Hutson, Bruce H. Dahlin, “Urban Identities: Social and Spatial Production at Classic Period Chunchucmil, Yucatan, Mexico.” In Making Ancient Cities, edited by Andrew T. Creekmore and Kevin D. Fisher, pp145-80. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge.

2014 Huston, Scott R., “Artefactos prehispánicos de la Sierra Mixe.” In Panorama Arqueológico: Dos Oaxacas, edited by Marcus Winter and Gonzalo Sánchez Santiago, pp. 225-236. Arqueología Oaxaqueña 4. Centro INAH Oaxaca.

2014 Munro-Stasiuk, Mandy, T. Kam Manahan and Scott R. Hutson, “Rejolladas como Lugares de Cultivo Intensivo: Recientes Investigaciones en el Norte yOriente de Yucatán.” Investigadores de la Cultura Maya, vol. 22,

2013 Hutson, Scott R., “Recap: Four Reasons for Relationality.” In Classic Maya Political Ecology: Resource Management, Class Histories, and Political Change in Northwestern Belize, edited by Jon  C. Lohse, pp. 211-25. Cotsen Institute for Archaeology, University of California, Los Angeles.

2013, Hutson, Scott R., K. Anne Pyburn, and Bryan K. Hanks, “Gender, Power, and Politics in Early States.” In Companion to Gender Prehistory, edited by Diane Bolger, pp. 45-67. Blackwell, Oxford.

2013, Hutson, Scott R., Galvin Can Herrera, Gabriel Adrian Chi, “Maya Heritage Entangled and Transformed.” International Journal of Heritage Studies 20(4):376-393.

2012, Hutson, Scott R. 2012   “Unavoidable Imperfections”: Historical Contexts for Representing Ruined Maya Buildings. In The Past Presented: Archaeological Illustration in the Americas, edited by J. Pillsbury, pp. 282-316. Dumbarton Oaks and Harvard University Press, Washington D.C and Cambridge MA.

2012 Hutson, Scott R., Aline Magnoni, Travis Stanton, Donald A. Slater, Scott Johnson “Memory and Power at Joya, Yucatan.” In Identity and Power in Ancient Mesoamerica: Current Theory and Practice, edited by Eleanor Harrison, pp. 39-52. University of Utah Press, Salt Lake City.

2012 Hutson, Scott R.,  “Urbanism, Architecture, and Internationalism in the Northern Lowlands during the Early Classic.” In The Ancient Maya of Mexico: Reinterpreting the Past of the Northern Maya Lowlands, edited by Geoffrey Braswell, pp. 119-142. Equinox Press, Bristol, CT.

2012, Stanton, Travis, and Scott R. Hutson, “Patrones de crecimiento urbano: albarradas y grupos domésticos en el Clásico Temprano en Chunchucmil, Yucatán.” In VII Coloquio Pedro Bosch Gimpera, edited by Guillermo Acosta Ochoa, pp. 299-316. UNAM, Mexico City.

2012 Hutson, Scott R., Aline Magnoni, Travis Stanton, “’All that is solid…’: Sacbes, Settlement and Semiotics at Tzacauil, Yucatan.” Ancient Mesoamerica 23: 297-311.

2012 Magnoni, A., S. R. Hutson and B. H. Dahlin Living in the City: Settlement Patterns and the Urban Experience at Classic Period Chunchucmil, Yucatan, Mexico. Ancient Mesoamerica 23:313-343.

2011 Hutson, Scott R., “The Art of Becoming: The Graffiti of Tikal” Latin American Antiquity 22(4):403-426.

2011, Hutson, Scott R., and Aline Magnoni, “Identidad Social en el Mosáico Urbano de Chunchucmil, Yucatán, México.” In Localidad y Globalidad en el Mundo Maya Prehispánico e Indígena Contemporáneo: Estudios de Espacio y Género, edited by Miriam Judith Gallegos Gómora, pp. 65-78. INAH, Mexico City.

2011 Dahlin, Bruce H., Marjukka Bstamow, Timothy Beach, Zachary Hruby, Scott R. Hutson and Daniel Mazeau,  “Phantom Lithics at Chunchucmil, Yucatan, Mexico.” In The Technology of Maya   Civilization: Political Economy and beyond in Lithic Studies, edited By Zachary Hruby, Geoff Braswell and Oswaldo Chinchilla, pp. 76-87. London, Equinox Press.

2010 Scott R. Hutson, Dwelling, Identity, and the Maya: Relational Archaeology at Chunchucmil. Altamira Press,   Lanham, MD.

Hutson, Scott R., Bruce H. Dahlin, Daniel Mazeau 2010 “Commerce and Cooperation among the Classic Maya: The Chunchucmil Case.” In Cooperation in Economy and Society, edited by Robert Marshall, pp. 81-103. Altamira Press, Lanham, MD.

2009 Phosphate Fractionation and Spatial Patterning in Ancient Ruins: A case study from Yucatan (with Aline Magnoni, Richard Terry, Tim Beach, Bruce Dahlin, and Mary Jo Schabel). Catena 78:260-269.

Hutson, Scott R., Miguel Covarrubias, and Leigh Anne Ellison 2009  “Un Paisaje Político: Nuevas Investigaciones en el Sacbé Regional de Ucí.” Investigadores de la Cultura Maya, vol. 17, pp. 285-298.

Hutson, Scott R. and Bruce Dahlin 2008 “Desenredando una paradoja: asentamiento y Economía en Chunchucmil, Yucatán.” Investigadores de la Cultura Maya, vol. 16, pp. 75-89.

2008   City, Site, and Community: Nucleation and Dispersion at Chunchucmil and Classic Period Maya Urban Centers (with David Hixson, Aline Magnoni, Daniel Mazeau, Bruce Dahlin). Journal of Field Archaeology 33(1):19-40.

2007  Cultural Logic and Practical Reason: The Structure of Discard in Ancient Maya Houselots (with Travis Stanton). Cambridge Archaeological Journal 17(1):123-144.

2007  Beyond the Buildings: Formation Processes of Ancient Maya Houselots and Methods for the Study of Non-architectural Space (with Travis Stanton, Aline Magnoni, Richard Terry, and Jason Craner). Journal of Anthropological Archaeology 26:442-473.

2007  Tourism in the Mundo Maya: Inventions and (Mis)Representations of Maya Identities and Heritage (with Aline Magnoni, Traci Ardren). Archaeologies 3(2):353-383.

2006  Recovering Social and Cultural Dynamics from Plaster Floors: Chemical Analyses at Ancient Chunchucmil, Yucatan, Mexico (with R. Terry). Journal of Archaeological Science 33(3): 391-404.

2006  Self-Citation in Archaeology: Age, Gender, Prestige, and the Self. Journal of Archaeological Method and Theory 13(1):1-18.

2006  The Social Experience of Childhood in Ancient Mesoamerica (ed. with Traci Ardren) Boulder: University Press of Colorado.

2006  The Archaeology of Urban Houselots at Chunchucmil, Yucatan, Mexico. (with A. Magnoni, D. Mazeau, and T. Stanton). In Lifeways in the Northern Lowlands: New Approaches to Maya Archaeology, ed. by J. Mathews and B. Morrison, pp 77-92. Tucson: University of Arizona Press.

2005, “Ways of Seeing: Chichén Itzá Landscape Portraiture and Maya Archaeologists.” In Art for Archaeology’s Sake: Material Culture and Style Across the Disciplines, pp. 228-238. Edited by A. Waters-Rist, C. Cluney, C. McNamee, and L. Steinbrenner. Calgary, The Archaeological Association of the University of Calgary.

2003 Reading the Past, 3rd Edition (with I. Hodder). Cambridge University Press, Cambridge

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