Steven Kuhn

Steven Kuhn

Professor, Anthropology

Emil W. Haury Building, Room 409C

Fall 2022 Office Hours

Tuesdays, 2-4pm

Wednesdays 9:30-11:30am

Email for virtual appt.

About Steven L. Kuhn

I am a Professor in the School of Anthropology. My research interests center on the evolution of human technological and social behavior. My primary research tool is the study of stone artifacts. I am currently involved in collaborative archaeological fieldwork and laboratory projects investigating Paleolithic sites and assemblages in Serbia, Morocco and China as well as the Levant. 

I received my Ph.D. in Anthropology from the University of New Mexico in 1990. After a brief stint at Loyola University in Chigao I joined the faculty at the University of Arizona in 1994. I have been a visiting professor at the Institute for Vertebrate Paleontology and Paleoanthropology in Beijing (2015/2016, 2019), sponsored by the Chinese Academy of Sciences, and a resident  scholar at the University of Cologne in 2009/2010, funded by a Research Award from the Alexander von Humboldt Stiftung. In 2017 I received the Award for Excellence in Archaeological Analysis (Lithics) from the Society for American Archaeology 


Selected Publications

Kuhn, S.L. 2020. The Evolution of Paleolithic Technolgies. Taylor & Francis.

Li, F., Kuhn, S., Chen, F-Y, Gao, X. 2020. Intra-assemblage variation in the macro-blade assemblage from the 1963 excavation at Shuidonggou locality 1, northern China, in the context of regional variation. PLos One

Kuhn, S.L. and M.C. Stiner. 2019.  Hearth and home in the Middle Pleistocene. XLVI JAR Distinguished Lecture, Journal of Anthropological Research 75(3): 305-327.

Li, F., S. L. Kuhn, F. Chen, Y. Wang, J. Southon, F. Peng, M. Shan, C. Wang, J. Ge, X. Wang, L. T, X.Gao. 2018.    The easternmost Middle Paleolithic (Mousterian) from Jinsitai Cave, North China. Journal of Human Evolution 114: 76-84.

Buchnnan, B., M.L. Hamilton, J.C. Hartley, S.L. Kuhn. 2017.  Investigating the scale of prehistoric social networks using culture, language, and point types in western North America. Archaeological and Anthropological Sciences DOI 10.1007/s12520-017-0537-y.

Kuhn, S. 2014. Signaling theory and technologies of communication in the Paleolithic. Biological Theory  DOI 10.1007/s13752-013-0156-5.




Courses Taught

Anth 160D2          Origins of Human Diversity (Tier 1 gen ed)

Anth 235               Principles of Archaeology 

Anth 562A            Archaeological Quantitative Methods

Anth 456/556A    Old World Prehistory

Anth 696A            Seminar in Hunter-Gather Ecology, Seminar in Lithic Analysis, 

Anth 637              Archaeological Research Methods


Areas of Study

Anatolia and Southwest Asia (Middle East)

Central Europe

North Africa

North China


Southeast Serbia Paleolithic project (with Prof. D. Mihailovic, University of Belgrade) 

Excavations at Bizmoune Cave, Essaouira, Morocco (with Prof. A. Bouzouggar, INSAP, Rabat, Morocco) 

Research on Shuidonngou, Locality 1 and Jinsitai Cave, North China (with Dr. Li Feng and Prof. Gao Xing, Institute for Vertebrate Paleontology and Paleonathropology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing, CHina)

Tabun cave analysis and publication (with Dr. R. Shimelmitz and Prof. M. Weinstein-Evron, University of Haifa, Israel)


Research Interests

Paleolithic archaeology and human evolution; social and ecological contexts for evolutionary change in hominid technologies; lithic technology; ornaments and early "information technology";  hunter-gatherer ecology; mathematical methods and modeling.