Making Mississippian at Cahokia

Susan M. Alt

in The Oxford Handbook of North American Archaeology

Published in print February 2012 | ISBN: 9780195380118
Published online September 2012 | | DOI:

Series: Oxford Handbooks

Making Mississippian at Cahokia

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  • Archaeology
  • Archaeology of North America



Understanding the Mississippian phenomenon is intimately tied to understanding Cahokia, the largest settlement at the heart of the most complex polity in ancient Native North America. Comprehending Cahokia, in turn, means understanding how diverse peoples can come together and create a greater community and polity through ritual and religion. It also means telling the story of how social and political projects can ultimately fail. Cahokia undeniably possessed a singular history, one that built on earlier Woodland period histories and events, and which continues to have an impact today.

Keywords: Native North America; Cahokia; diverse peoples; ritual and religion; Woodland period; community and polity

Article.  3919 words. 

Subjects: Archaeology ; Archaeology of North America

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