Known nationally for his contributions to quantified archaeological research designs and internationally for his work on hunter-gatherer adaptations, epistemology and human origins research, Geoffrey A. Clark, who joined the ASU faculty in 1971, has an exceptionally strong, balanced record in research, graduate education and public service. His internationally recognized work in paleoanthropology has produced four major contributions to knowledge.
1. His research on paleolithic hunter-gatherers in Spain and Jordan (funded so far by 14 NSF and NGS grants to Clark and his students) has shown that human dietary intensification provoked by population/resource imbalances predated the shift to domestication economies by as much as 10 kyr.
2. Clark's papers on the history and role of quantification in archaeological research have made significant contributions to the anglophone research tradition, the most heavily quantified in the world.
3. Since 1987 Clark has been a major writer and lecturer on the epistemological foundations for knowledge claims in paleolithic archaeology and human paleontology.
4. His recent involvement in modern human origins research (numerous articles, two books) has shown that data do not exist independent of the conceptual frameworks that define and contextualize them, and that paleoanthropologists can only ignore the logic of inference at their peril.
A number of his c. 275 publications have been reprinted in anthologies and other collected works. Clark is a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS), the AAA, the Royal Anthropological Institute (UK), and the Sociedad de Ciencias Naturales (Spain).
Ph.D. University of Chicago 1971
Archaeologist and paleoanthropologist Geoffrey A. Clark is the author, co-author or editor of over 250 articles, notes, reviews and comments, and 11 monographs and books on human biological and cultural evolution in ‘deep time’ - the past four million years.
An active researcher, Clark has presented dozens of invited papers in organized symposia at the annual meetings of the Society for American Archaeology (SAA) and the AAA. He has also been invited to lecture on his research at a number of American universities and in 16 foreign countries. In addition to service on national committees, he and John Lindly won the AAA's prestigious Morton Fried Prize for the best paper published in the American Anthropologist (1989).
A University of Chicago Ph.D (1971), his current interests turn on the logic of inference underlying knowledge claims in the various aspects of modern human origins research (Conceptual Issues in Modern Human Origins Research, co-edited with Cathy Willermet, Aldine de Gruyter ; New Approaches to the Study of Early Upper Paleolithic ‘Transitional’ Industries in Western Eurasia, co-edited with Julien Riel-Salvatore, Archaeopress ) and with applications of neo-Darwinian evolutionary theory in archaeology (Rediscovering Darwin: Evolutionary Theory in Archaeological Explanation, co-edited with C. Michael Barton, American Anthropological Association .
Clark has done fieldwork in Arizona, Mexico, France, Spain, Cyprus, Turkey and Jordan. Other research foci include European Mesolithic forager adaptations (The Mesolithic of the Atlantic Façade, co-edited with Manuel González Morales, ASU Anthropological Research Papers  and the peopling of the Americas (The Settlement of the American Continents, co-edited with C. Michael Barton, David Yesner and Georges Pearson, University of Arizona Press .
A Regent’s Professor in the School of Human Evolution & Social Change (SHESC) at Arizona State University, Clark has headed the Archeology Division of the American Anthropological Association (AAA), and the Anthropology Section of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS).
He lectures on race, racism and ethnic conflict; the evolution of human mating, the conflict between religion and science (‘creation science’), human evolution, and modern human origins. A materialist to the core, and a committed evolutionist, he has been concerned lately with the promotion of western science as a conceptual framework for describing and explaining the experiential world, and with contesting the claims of the various anti- and pseudo-science constituencies arrayed against it.
PhD and Graduate Mentoring
Clark has a stellar record in graduate education, having chaired 25 completed Ph.D. committees and 36 MA committees (and two BA honors theses). He is, in fact, the department record holder for graduate degree production. He enjoys working with graduate students and has been unusually successful at involving them in his research. An NSF Fellow (1967-71), he has also served on eight NSF graduate fellowship panels.
In 1988, Professor Clark received the Graduate College Distinguished Research Professorship. This award ultimately led to ASU's acquisition of the Institute of Human Origins (1997). In 1992, he won the Graduate College's Outstanding Mentor Award.
His mentoring philosophy makes clear his approach to graduate education, his construal of the nature of archaeology as a scientific endeavor, and his perception of the relationship between science, science policy, education and the public. Clark's doctoral students have received dissertation funding from a variety of foundations and carried out their research around the world.
These students have gone on to successful careers at the University of California, Berkeley; University of South Carolina, New Mexico State University, Iowa State University, California State University, Northridge; San Diego State University, Montana State University, Marquette University, St. Mary's University, Seoul National University, King Saud University, University of Jordan, University of Arizona, and ASU. Eight others work in museums, the government, or the private sector.
Ayl-to-Ras en'Naqb Survey Project
Mediterranean Landscape Dynamics
Clark, G. A. (2012). The ARNAS paleolithic collections in regional context. In The Ayl to Ras an-Naqab Archaeological Survey, Southern Jordan (2005-2007), pp. 391-416. Boston: American Schools of Oriental Research.
Clark, G. A. (2011). Historical connection and formal convergence in the Lower Paleolithic of Eurasia. In Handaxes in the Imjin Basin: Diversity and Variability in the East Asian Paleolithic [S. Yi, Ed.], pp. 37-82. Seoul: Seoul National University Press.
Clark, G. A. (2009). Accidents of history: conceptual frameworks in paleoarchaeology. In Sourcebook of Paleolithic Transitions: Methods, Theories and Interpretations [M. Camps & P. Chauhan, eds.], pp. 19-42. New York: Springer.
Clark, G. A. & Riel-Salvatore, J. (2009). What’s in a name? Observations on the compositional integrity of the Aurignacian. In The Mediterranean from 50,000-25,000 BP: Turning Points and New Directions [M. Camps & C. Szmidt, eds.], pp. 323-338. Oxford: Oxbow Books.
Riel-Salvatore, J., Clark, G. A. & Miller, A. (2008). An empirical evaluation of the case for a Châtelperronian-Aurignacian interstratification at Grotte des Fées de Châtelperron. World Archaeology 40(4): 480-492.
Clark, G. A. (2007). The flight from science and reason - Evolution and creationism in contemporary American life. In Proceedings of the International Conference ‘Science and Archaeology’ [A. Stenger, A. Schneider & B. Harrison, Eds.], pp. 60-80. Portland, OR: Institute for Archaeological Studies.
Clark, G. A. & Riel-Salvatore, J. (2006). Observations on systematics in Paleolithic archaeology. In Transitions Before the Transition: Evolution and Stability in the Middle Paleolithic and the Middle Stone Age [E. Hovers & S. Kuhn, Eds.], pp. 29-56. New York: Springer.
Clark, G. A. (2005). Modern approaches to Paleolithic archaeology in Europe: a sampler of research traditions. American Antiquity 70(2): 376-384.
Barton, C. M., Clark, G. A.,Yesner, D. & Pearson, G. (Eds.). (2004). The Settlement of the American Continents: a Multidisciplinary Approach to Human Biogeography. Tucson: University of Arizona Press.
González Morales M. R. & Clark, G. A. (Eds.). (2004). The Mesolithic of the Atlantic Façade: Proceedings of the Santander Symposium. Tempe: Arizona State University Press: Arizona State University Anthropological Research Paper No. 55.
Rousteaei, K., Vahdati Nasab, H., Biglari, F., Heydari, S., Clark, G. A. & Lindly, J. M. (2004). Recent paleolithic surveys in Luristan. Current Anthropology 45(5): 692-706 enhancements: www.journals.uchicago.edu/cgi-bin/resolve?CA045703.
Clark, G. A. (2003). American archaeology's uncertain future. In S. Gillespie & D. Nichols (Eds.), Archaeology is Anthropology (pp. 51-68). Arlington: Archeological Papers of the American Anthropological Association No. 13.
Clark, G. A. (2002). Neandertal archaeology-implications for our origins. American Anthropologist, 104(1), 50-67.
Clark, G. A. & Riel-Salvatore, J. (2001). Grave markers: Middle and early Upper Paleolithic burials and the use of chronotypology in contemporary Paleolithic research. Current Anthropology, 42(4), 449-460 and 470-479.
Clark, G. A. (2000). Thirty years of Mesolithic research in Atlantic coastal Iberia (1970-2000). Journal of Anthropological Research, 56(1), 17-37.
Clark, G. A. (1999). Modern human origins - highly visible, curiously intangible. Science 283: 2029-2032; 284: 917; www.sciencemag.org/ feature/data/990029.shl.
Straus, L. G., Clark, G. A., Altuna, J. & Ortea, J. (1980). Ice-Age subsistence in northern Spain. Scientific American 242(6): 142-153.
Clark has served on various NEH, NRC, NSF, and AAAS panels. He was elected to the American Anthropological Associations (AAA) executive board (1986/89, 2001/04), chaired the AAA's Archeology Division (1997/99), and the AAAS Anthropology Section (2001/02).
Clark has also been involved in anthropological publishing, having created ASU's Anthropological Research Papers (ARP), a peer-reviewed and widely distributed monograph series published under ABOR copyright (59 titles published to date). He was the founding editor of the AAA's Archeological Papers (AP3A, 1989/93), the largest anthropological monograph series in the US (and probably the world) and served as an associate editor for the American Anthropologist, the AAA's flagship journal (1997/02). On the local level, he has been president of both the ASU and the Arizona chapters of the AAUP (1979/81), Phi Kappa Phi (1986/87) and the Society of Sigma Xi (1992/93, 1997/98). A frequent reviewer for NSF, NGS, SSHRC (Canada), NERC (UK) and other funding agencies, Professor Clark has also served as a reader/referee for more than a dozen national and international anthropological journals and general science periodicals (e.g., Science).