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William Fash

William Fash, Harvard University, Fellow 2015–2016

During my fellowship at Dumbarton Oaks, I conducted intensive library research on the various Mesoamerican ballgames and stone courts, completing my chapters for the monograph that Barbara Fash and I are editing on the ball courts of Copan, Honduras, for the Peabody Museum Press. My chapters for two other edited volumes were also completed; a final, 523-page technical report on the investigations of Cuauhtinchan Viejo, Puebla, was submitted to Instituto Nacional de Antropología e Historia, Mexico; and three coauthored papers for the annual meeting of the Society for American Archaeology in April were prepared. During the first week of March, Barbara and I fulfilled our fiduciary and academic responsibilities to the Santander Program for Research and Conservation of Mayan Sculpture, administered by Harvard’s David Rockefeller Center for Latin American Studies, by traveling to Copan to supervise and to provide guidance for our ten staff at the regional Center for Archaeological Investigations. At the request of 2014–2015 Dumbarton Oaks fellow Jorge Ramos, we visited and shared thoughts about the new excavation program that Jorge is codirecting at the large Copan Valley residential compound of Group 8N-11. That work has provided compelling new evidence for the conclusions that Alexandre Tokovinine, Barbara Fash, and I adumbrated in the Dumbarton Oaks volume The Art of Urbanism, regarding the importance of the House of New Fire at Teotihuacán, Mexico, for Classic Maya dynasts and royal courts. Colleagues on the Copan Acropolis Project and I corresponded frequently regarding our upcoming summary volume, and I supervised the completion of two doctoral dissertations.