Date of Award


Degree Name

Master of Arts



First Advisor

Dr. Charles E. Hilton

Second Advisor

Dr. Robert Anemone

Third Advisor

Dr. Michael Nassaney

Access Setting

Masters Thesis-Open Access


The prehistoric coastal communities of Point Hope, Alaska have been considered important Arctic archaeological sites since their initial excavations in 1939. The majority of the archaeological artifacts are grouped into two temporally distinct cultural components, the Ipiutak (2100-1500BP) and the Tigara (800-300BP). Although debated, Arctic archaeologists have suggested that the Ipiutak depended heavily on land mammals with only seasonal reliance on sea mammals, whereas the Tigara relied primarily on sea mammals including whales. While both groups clearly utilized foraging subsistence economies, the contrasts in their food acquisition strategies would have placed different demands on the males and females, particularly with regard to paramasticatory behavior. This paper addresses aspects of the gender-based division of labor in the Ipiutak and Tigara through an analysis of their patterns of incisal dental microwear.