Natalia Handziuk Headshot. She has brown eyes and smiles, wearing a green ball-cap with aviator-style sunglasses atop the brim.

Natalia M. Handziuk

Natalia M. Handziuk is an anthropological archaeologist who primarily works in the southern Levant. Her research focuses on understanding how early small-scale urban societies navigated coming together and building community during the initial centuries of urban coalescence. Her thesis, Olive oil and Urban Beginnings: A perspective from Early Bronze Age northern Jordan explored innovation in agricultural processing that resulted in increasing yields, which were necessary for provisioning growing communities during the Early Bronze IB period (3300-3050 BCE). Her postdoctoral research continues to investigate socio-political and economic developments in the Early Bronze Age Southern Levant (3300-2000 BCE) through mortuary contexts. By analyzing multiple charnel houses on the Dead Sea Plain, Jordan, she explores mortuary practices as a forum for navigating socio-political relationships in emergent urban arrangements. She particularly focuses on how practices evolved overtime, concomitant with local and regional socio-political developments.

Handziuk specializes in analyzing architecture, agricultural features, spatial patterning of materials and refuse, as well as ceramic production and use. She has extensive experience analyzing ceramic composition, technology and use wear; archival data and documents; as well as conducting experimental archaeology and fieldwork. As part of the Gadachrili Gora Regional Archaeology Project (GRAPE) in the Republic of Georgia she conducts ceramic experiments – recreating neolithic and chalcolithic technologies to teach material analysis skills (ceramic analysis) and anthropological theory (chaîne opératoire, Communities of Practice, Entanglement) to undergraduate and graduate students.

Since 2012, her fieldwork has included projects in Greece, Mongolia, Georgia, and Jordan. She has conducted research in Jordan for over a decade, analyzing collections, conducting excavations and surveys on Neolithic through Hellenistic sites, with a focus on the Early Bronze Age. She has worked with the Tell Madaba Archaeological Project, Khirbat al-Mukhayyat Archaeological Project, Wadi Ziqlāb Archaeological Project, Wadi Quseayba Archaeological Project, excavations at Khirbat Um al-Ghozlan, The Archaeological Expedition to Khirbat Iskandar and Its Environs, and The Expedition to the Dead Sea Plain.