SBVC Anthropology Department

SBVC Anthropology Department

San Bernardino Valley College Anthropology Department


Pandemics. Climate change. Migration. Global media. International security. Culture change. Interested in globalization and global problem-solving?
Consider GLOBAL STUDIES 101 for Fall 2022.

Kit Kat, Puppies, And Masks: Anthro-Vision : The Indicator from Planet Money 08/10/2021

Let "anthro-vision" inspire your creative problem-solving! Anthropology courses are open, have zero text costs, and are completely online. Some are self-paced. Starting 8/16 San Bernardino Valley College SBVC

Kit Kat, Puppies, And Masks: Anthro-Vision : The Indicator from Planet Money What do Kit Kat, dog food, and mask wearing have in common? You'll find the answer in the new book Anthro-Vision. We speak with its author, journalist and anthropologist, Gillian Tett.


SBVC Anthropology Department is ready to get started in Fall 2021! Online classes. No textbook costs. Start dates 8/16 and 8/30. Bringing back ANTHRO 125 Language and Culture along with regular course offerings ANTHRO 106 Biological Anthropology, ANTHRO 102 Cultural Anthropology, and ANTHRO 110 Magic, Witchcraft, and Religion. Want to study human beliefs and diversity and how you can bring more empathy and creativity to your workplace? Check out an ANTHRO class!

San Bernardino Valley College SBVC

Why Bridgerton’s depiction of race is so unsatisfying 01/22/2021

SBVC Anthropology professors are dedicated to facilitating empathetic conversation and transformation. Want to talk about representation in media? Let us know your thoughts.

Colorblindness does not contribute to the dismantling of racism, but on-screen narratives and images do provide a way for audiences and consumers to imagine and dream a more just and equal world.

Why Bridgerton’s depiction of race is so unsatisfying Bridgerton wants to have Black characters while handwaving the reality of racism. Should it?


Interested in talking with SBVC Anthro Profs? Help with classes, questions about the field, ideas about current events, advice for Anthropology majors, etc.

Email [email protected] to request Zoom link for group chat on Feb 5 11am.

San Bernardino Valley College


Hello, SCA Community! The 2021 Annual Meeting will be held virtually on March 4-6, 2021. We have some great sessions lined up and today we will start to share some highlights with you. We are in the process of finalizing the schedule and will share it with you as soon as it is completed.

You can find meeting details at!

After the Smoke Clears: Post-Fire Collaborative Archaeology and Recovery in the Santa Monica Mountains
Stansell, Ann
National Park Service, Santa Monica Mountains
Kulaga, Nicole
National Park Service, Santa Monica Mountains

The destructive 2018 Woolsey Fire is the latest in a series of wildfires that have affected the Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area. These serial-fires are smoke signals from Mother Nature, a harbinger of a new way of life in the Golden State. The largest wildfire in the recorded history of the mountains ignited on November 8, 2018 in Woolsey Canyon. It spread rapidly to the Pacific Ocean, ultimately burning just under 97,000 acres of a patchwork of National Parks, State Parks, conservancies, local open space, and private land before being contained on November 22, 2018. Existing partnerships and new collaboration amongst federal and state land managers, Native American communities, colleges/universities, and other local stakeholders have helped to address the post-fire assessment, stabilization, and treatment of cultural resources. As wildfires are becoming more frequent, understanding their direct and indirect impacts to cultural resources is essential to protecting them. The paper presentations in this fire archaeology symposium highlight current regional recovery efforts taking place in the Santa Monica Mountains, illustrating the challenges and opportunities in rebuilding resilience and preparing for a life where fire is a season.


1. Al Knight
2. Barbara S. Tejada
3. Nicole D. Kulaga
4. Ann C. Stansell
5. Colleen M. Delaney
6. Jade F. Willard
7. Andrew Kinkella
8. Austin T. Ringelstein
8. Kristin M. Hoppa
9. Michelle Pacheco

Native American Pictographic Rock Art in the Santa Monica Mountains - A Post-2018 Fire Condition Report
Knight, Albert F.
Santa Barbara Museum of Natural History Anthropology Department Associate

The Santa Monica Mountains are host to numerous sites with pictographs. Beginning in the afternoon of November 8, 2018, all of these sites were threatened with destruction when the Woolsey Fire began at the former Santa Susana Field Laboratory, south of Simi Valley. Santa Ana winds were gusting at 70mph where the fire began and the arriving fire-fighters were immediately overwhelmed. The NRHP B***o Flats Painted Cave site complex was immediately engulfed in flames. The fire rapidly spread to the southwest and it reached the Pacific Ocean at Malibu the next day. Three people were killed, 300,000 people were evacuated, and some 97,000 acres burnt, including the locations of several significant pictograph sites. Following the fire, the presenter coordinated basic site-assessments of all of the area pictograph sites. Condition assessments were made by both professional and avocational archaeologists.

A New Normal: Post-Fire Collaborations in California State Parks
Tejada, Barbara S.
California State Parks
Wake, Thomas A.
UCLA Cotsen Institute of Archaeology

As the devastating 2018 Woolsey Fire signaled a new normal of annual fires affecting southern California state parks, existing partnerships and new collaborations have helped to address the post-fire assessment needs for cultural resources. With over 9,800 acres burned across four park units affecting 87 recorded archaeological sites and eight built environment structures, followed by a wet winter with numerous periods of rainfall, time was critical to conduct post-fire site assessments and surveys before spring and summer growth hampered visibility. Working with staff from the State Parks Southern Service Center, archaeological site stewardship volunteers, and a new collaboration with the UCLA Cotsen Institute of Archaeology, 46 recorded sites were visited and 21 sites were newly identified in the six months following the fire. As well, State Parks worked with CalRecycle contractors and representatives from the Barbareño/Ventureño Band of Mission Indians and the Fernandeño Tataviam Band of Mission Indians on site cleanups for several destroyed structures within park lands. Finally, ongoing consultation with Caltrans District 7 is addressing post-fire highway repairs and impacts to cultural sites along the coastline at Leo Carrillo State Park.

Post-Woolsey Fire Archaeological Site Stabilization in the Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area
Kulaga, Nicole D.
Santa Monica Mountains National Recreational Area

In November 2018, the Woolsey Fire burned more than 21,000 of the 23,595 acres (or 88%) of National Park Service (NPS) land within the Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area. With the mountains having a history of human occupation reaching back to at least 7,000 years ago, many cultural resources were within the burn area, including 262 cultural resources on NPS land alone. While the fire directly affected some resources, many other impacts occurred in the post-fire conditions, largely due to the heavy rains that following winter season. Since then, 59 archaeological sites on NPS lands were identified as being highly susceptible to erosion, looting, and other post-fire condition threats.
Treatments were placed at many of these sites to both deter and monitor erosion. This paper describes the direct and indirect effects of fire on cultural resources and the stabilization treatments implemented to protect them, as well as discusses the effectiveness of these treatments. Because wildfires are becoming more commonplace in the western United States, understanding the direct and indirect impacts to cultural resources is vital to protecting them.

Reconciling the Past: Post-fire Museum Recovery at Santa Monica Mountains
Stansell, Ann C.
California State ParksThe Woolsey Fire largely destroyed the National Park Service Rocky Oaks Museum Research Building containing archeological collections and non-digitized archives. The building housed most of the Park's collection of 911,345 items, including 877,977 archival, 24,722 archeological, 4,542 historic, 3,380 art, 442 biological, 231 paleontological, and 50 ethnographic items/specimens. Emergency collections recovery and salvage tasks were conducted November 19-30, 2018 with support of the Santa Ynez Band of Chumash Indians Fire Department and included identifying and documenting fire-and fire suppression related damage. Salvage recovery produced a fraction of the original collection, mainly heavily-heat altered archeological material. Because of how the building burned, many of the surviving artifacts remained in place, preserving some provenience information. Salvaged collections were moved to the nearby LaKretz Field Station, where they are being sorted and re-associated by NPS staff, interns and Volunteers-In-Parks. The fire devastated the local community, as hundreds of homes in Malibu were destroyed. There is a strong desire to participate in recovery efforts, and the opportunity to handle artifacts provides a tangible connection to the prehistory, history, and resiliency of the Santa Monica Mountains. This paper highlights public involvement in the reconciliation of recovered collections with museum records and the Interior Collections Management System database.

Out of the Ashes: Archaeological Investigations of a post-WWII structure at Camarillo State
Delaney, Colleen M.
California State University, Channel Islands
Willard, Jade F.
California State University Channel Islands
Garcia, Evelyn
California State University Channel Islands

The California State University Channel Islands campus buildings were originally constructed when Camarillo State Hospital was opened in the 1930s. In addition to a medical hospital and patient wards, the hospital included a working farm with row crops and orchards, as well as a dairy and piggory. During archaeological surveys of campus after the May 2013 Springs fire, students and faculty at CSUCI located a small structure built on a hillside near the former farm/dairy. This structure is a mystery, as it is not identified on any hospital plans or maps, and is not visible in aerial photographs from the 1930s-1970s.
This presentation focuses on the results of our summer 2019 excavation of the structure, outlining the artifacts recovered and our interpretation of this enigmatic building.

Looking Through the Glass: Using Glass Containers to Date a 20th Century Building at CSU Channel Islands
Willard, Jade F.
CSU Channel Island Student

The land that California State University, Channel Islands sits on holds a history of many purposes. Before the land was a university, it was a Chumash tribal territory, a California mental hospital, agricultural hotspot, and part of a historic Mexican era land grant. Over the summer 2019, students and faculty of CSU, Channel Islands excavated an undocumented stone structure found in the hills above the abandoned dairy farm after the 2013 Springs Fire. Numerous artifacts were recovered, including tools, glass containers, children's toys, and painting equipment. The stone structure is a bit of a mystery, as it is not recorded in documents associated with the Camarillo State Hospital. In this presentation I focus on glass containers recovered from the structure to determine the site's periods of occupation, and to determine the activities occurring at this location. The use of glass, therefore, allows archaeologists to "fill-in" the gaps in the historical record.

Perseverance Through the Smoke at Simoâ'mo: Recent Research at CA-VEN-24
Kinkella, Andrew Moorpark College

Since 2010, the Moorpark College Archaeology Program (MCAP) has undertaken survey and excavations at Simo'mo (CA-VEN-24), a coastal Chumash village site. Because of our location at the western edge of the Santa Monica Mountains, our work has been disrupted and threatened several times in the last few years by fire, most notably during the Springs fire of 2013. The implications of these longer, more devastating fire seasons will be discussed, along with our most recent finds, including 20 new C14 dates that we have recorded. These new data will be used to refine the temporal record at both CA-VEN-24 and the nearby site of CA-VEN-1691 and give a clearer picture of local settlement patterns along Calleguas Creek over the last two thousand years.

Historical-Archaeological Investigations of an African American Woman’s Homestead in the Los Angeles Wilderness
Ringelstein, Austin T.
National Park Service, Santa Monica Mountains

The Woolsey Fire had devastating impacts on the area's cultural resources, but it also created an opportunity to search for the archaeological remains of an African American woman's homestead in the rugged wilderness outside of Los Angeles. Alice Ballard was a young woman who established her own 160-acre homestead and log house about 1900, when it was unusual for women of color to do so. The search for her cabin site began years ago, but it was not until after the Woolsey Fire that the ground surface became visible. Some artifacts observed on her former homestead roughly date to her period of occupation on the land, which has led to investigations by students from California State University, Northridge. The archaeology and the stories about the people who have had stake in this land reveal a powerful narrative about the importance of place and the potential to weave the past with the present, and future.

Post-Woolsey Fire Opportunities in Historical Archaeology: CSUN and the Alice Ballard Project
Pacheco, Michelle CSUN
Ciotti-Concha, Amorina CSUN

The 2018 Woolsey Fire exposed the site of African American homesteader Alice Ballard, providing California State University, Northridge (CSUN) students an opportunity to examine the site and associated collection of historic artifacts. The Alice Ballard site, located in the Santa Monica Mountains, is of significant importance for African American heritage in Los Angeles and Ventura counties. CSUN's role in this project has been in the examination and analysis of the collections as part of the curriculum for Historical Archaeology class (ANTH 449). Through this project CSUN students have had the opportunity to get a hands-on experience in examining and dating historical archaeological objects.


Cultural Anthropology (ANTHRO 102) classes are OPEN and ZTC (no textbook costs) for Spring 2021. Fully online. 8 weeks.

GE Social Science class that covers topics including race and health, relativism, cultural ecology, and cultural identities.

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