General Information

                                                                                       Doctoral Candidate
Interdepartmental Program in Anthropological Sciences
Archaeology of Technology Laboratory
Stony Brook University

Advisor: Prof. John Shea (SBU)
Committee: Prof. Sonia Harmand (SBU), Prof. John Fleagle (SBU), Prof. Elisabeth Hildebrand (SBU), and Prof. Jay Reti (UCSC)


We live in a world where humans transform the shape of the material world around them. Objects shaped by human hands are integral to our everyday experience, yet we know little about the origins of this behavior.

I am a Ph.D. candidate in the IDPAS at Stony Brook University in the Archaeology of Technology Laboratory. My research investigates the origins of the unique human ability to transform raw material shapes. My research focuses on stone tools from the Plio-Pleistocene archaeological record of eastern Africa (Kenya).

Evidence for stone tool shaping appears in the archaeological record about two million years after the inception of hominin stone tool-making. The earliest generally accepted evidence for shaping are "Large Cutting Tools" (LCTs) about 1.76 Ma, found within the Kokiselei complex, west of the Lake Turkana in northwestern Kenya.

My dissertation research is centered on knapping processes to track the development of hominin shaping behavior throughout the Kokiselei complex archaeological sequence. These analyses are experimentally-grounded, testing the analytical feasibility of detecting shaping in the archaeological lithic record.



Duke, H. and Pargeter, J. 2015. Weaving Simple Solutions to Complex Problems: An Experimental Study of Bipolar Quartz Cobble-Splitting at Eagle's Nest, NY (3.5-5 kya). Lithic Technology. DOI:

Pargeter, J. and Duke, H. 2015. "Evolutionary Perspectives on Bipolar Technology": Introduction to the Exploring Variability in Bipolar Technology Lithic Technology special edition: Evolutionary perspectives on bipolar technology. Lithic Technology. DOI:

Conference Contributions

Recent Papers

Duke, H. & Harmand, S. 2018. A new approach to the evolution of Early Pleistocene hominin cognition and technological change: Examining the technological context of LCT emergence 1.8-1.76 Ma at Kokiselei, West Turkana, Kenya. Paper given in the "Challenges and Advances in the Archaeology and Paleoanthropology of Non-Modern Humans" symposium at the 2018 SAA 83rd Annual meeting, Washington, DC.

Duke, H. & Harmand, S. 2018. Continuity and change: A diachronic technological analysis of the earliest Acheulean at Kokiselei in Turkana, Kenya (1.8-1.76 Ma). Podium presentation at the Paleoanthropology Society Annual meeting, Austin, TX.


Teaching Assistantships 

Turkana Basin Institute Origins Field School, Spring 2016

How We Eat, Fall 2015

African Peoples and Cultures, Spring 2015

Primitive Technology, Fall 2013.

Evolution of Human Behavior, Spring 2013 and Fall 2016

Introduction to Archaeology, Fall 2012.

Research Grants

• Leakey Foundation Research Grant, December 2016.

• Sigma Xi Grant in Aid of Research, May 2015.

  Sigma Xi Grant in Aid of Research, May 2014.

      Doctoral Fellowship. September 2013- May 2016. SSHRC, Canada.

Current Research Projects

Position: Team member
Duration: Fall 2013 - present
Collaborators: Prof. Sonia Harmand, Dr. Jason Lewis, Dr. Nicholas Taylor

Subpages (2): Conference Abstracts CV