Journal of Archaeological Method and Theory

, Volume 17, Issue 2, pp 132–173 | Cite as

Involutions of Materiality

Operationalizing a Neo-materialist Perspective through the Causeways at Ichmul and Yo’okop
  • Johan NormarkEmail author


The neo-materialist ontology outlined by the philosophers Gilles Deleuze and Manuel DeLanda has several implications for archeology. This text primarily discusses their replacement of the general and the specific with universal and individual singularities which creates emergent properties. This is both a process of evolution and involution where materialities create multi-scalar assemblages. Causeway assemblages from two sites, Ichmul and Yo’okop in the northern Maya lowlands in southern Mexico, are used to operationalize this perspective. Rather than focusing on a human-centered perspective, the text sees the causeways as parts of technologies that can help us to reach an anorganic perspective where we can become-materiality.


Deleuze Materiality Maya Causeway 



I thank five reviewers for their comments. The investigations in the Cochuah region were financed by Antigua Foundation, the Foundation for the Advancement of Mesoamerican Studies, Inc., the H. John Heinz III Fund, the Selz Foundation, Vetenskapsrådet, Sida, Birgit och Gad Rausings stiftelse för humanistisk forskning, Den Adlerbertska forskningsstiftelsen, Gunvor och Josef Anérs stiftelse, Helge Ax:son Johnsons stiftelse, Kungliga vetenskaps- och vitterhetssamhället, Magn. Bergvalls stiftelse, Stiftelsen Fru Mary von Sydows, född Wijk, donationsfond, Stiftelsen Hierta-Retzius fond, Stiftelsen Lars Hiertas minne and Wilhelm och Martina Lundgrens vetenskapsfond 1.


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Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Archaeology and Classical StudiesStockholm UniversityStockholmSweden

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