Tuesday, March 13th, 2018
“Communities of Practice and Persistent Craft Traditions: Identifying Individuals and Communities in
Chumash Basket Weaving”

Kaitlin Brown, M.A., UC Santa Barbara

This paper investigates the ways Chumash basket weavers reconstituted themselves and persevered during and after the colonial period in Alta California. Specifically, I focus on two distinct and chronologically sequential Chumash basket weaving communities, including one group of weavers who lived at Mission San Buenaventura in the early1800s and another group who fashioned baskets for the global market at the turn of the 20th century. Detailed examination of baskets in museum collections produced by these weavers reveals both similarities and distinct differences in manufacturing techniques. I suggest that during a time of cultural and political upheaval, the existence of basket weaving communities played a large part in the perseverance of Chumash cultural identities in these two historically distinct contexts. Interviews with contemporary indigenous
basket weavers lend support to these interpretations and provide insight into the meanings and importance of basket weaving communities that continue to thrive today.

Kaitlin Brown is a Ph.D. Anthropology student at UC Santa Barbara.
Meeting Place
Second Tuesday of every month (no meetings in July and August) at 7:00 pm
Chumash Indian Museum 
3290 Lang Ranch Pkwy Thousand Oaks, CA 91362

Ventura County Archeological Society (VCAS) 
P.O. Box 4172 
Thousand Oaks, CA 91359 

   The VCAS/Ventura County Archaeological Society was established in 1972 when concerned Ventura County citizens as well as local professional and avocational archaeologists saw a need to organize, study and preserve our County's rich prehistoric heritage.

  The Society has been instrumental in the implementation of research and preservation goals aimed at our local archaeological resources.  With an eye towards the future the Society has a collections and archival curation program, site recordation and monitoring program, and a continuing education program. 

101 freeway take Westlake Blvd exit, go to North Westlake Blvd 4 miles to Lang Ranch Pkwy, turn right. Museum is on right hand side
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