LECTURE 6 NOTES
LECTURE 6 NOTES ANT 160
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This 3 page Class Notes was uploaded by Alexis Fulton on Friday February 12, 2016. The Class Notes belongs to ANT 160 at University of Kentucky taught by Renee Bonzani in Winter 2016. Since its upload, it has received 18 views. For similar materials see Cultural Diversity in the Modern World in anthropology, evolution, sphr at University of Kentucky.
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Date Created: 02/12/16
Dr. Renée Bonzani Lecture Outlines for ANT 160: Cultural Diversity in the Modern World • Where Food Comes From: Diversification of Subsistence and the Origins of Food Production • “…advances in subsistence technologies are a necessary precondition for any significant increase in either the size or the complexity of any society.” (Nolan and Lenski 2006: 57). • “Complex societies are those in which hierarchically ordered social components exhibit marked functional differentiation and specialization. The components are therefore functionally interdependent in that no individual or group can fulfill all of the required roles and duties.” (Carmichael 1995: 181). • After the lithic revolution of the Oldowan, the Acheulean hand axe technology was successful for almost 1,000,000 years. • The invention of pottery was a major technological achievement • Pottery was first invented in Japan around 12,000 years ago. • However, early pottery at ca. 20,000 years ago has recently been reported as recovered from Xianrendong Cave, Jiangxi Province, China (Wu et al. 2012). • In the Americas pottery was invented only 7,000 years ago in northern South America. • In northern Africa, 10,000 years ago. • In the Levant, 8,000 years ago. • Pottery was important because it changed the way that humans processed their food for consumption and it improved health conditions of such foods by removing some of the toxins • Initially, pottery had a ritual use for serving and fermentation. Later, it’s function expanded to the cooking of meals. • Before pottery, most of the food was cooked by direct fire or roasting pits and heating rocks. • Photo of metate (groundstone lithics) in situ in earth oven feature. • Food production • The shift from collecting foods to food cultivation is also linked to the beginning of the Holocene period. It began to occur around 10,000 years ago in the Levant (Palestine, Israel, Syria) • In Asia, around the same time as well as in Thailand, China and Indus delta (Pakistan). • In Turkey, Iraq, Zagros mountains in Iran. • In the Americas evidence for early cultigens has also been pushed back to 10,000 to 8,000 BP in Peru and Mexico. • Why we domesticated plants: • Conditions: population pressure, reduced mobility, competition for resources. 1 • Intensification in terms of the use of space with wild foods that are selected because of the large number of offspring (seeds) and short timing in reproduction. • Management of risk in relation to dry seasons or winter conditions and by being predictable in their availability. • Food production favored human populations to be able to: Live in small villages that have the characteristics of supporting extended families Territorial control of land Division of labor in terms of gender Strong basis in kinship relations Storage of resources in relation to seasons of hunger (dry season or winter season). The rise of food production seems to correlate with intensification in processing technologies as well. Example fermentation and improvement of health conditions. Changes in cosmologies. It is the time of the formation of cemeteries as specialized areas. The formation of religious cults: mother goddess, Bull cults, Skull cults (cult of the ancestors). • Problems with increased food production and reduction of mobility • Increased population growth • Increased the spread of transmissible diseases • Decreased the quality of food • Warfare • Economic inequality between groups and hereditary social inequality • Which plants were domesticated: • Americas: Tomatoes, potatoes, beans, peanuts, manioc, peppers, squash, quinoa. What is missing here? • Southeast Asia: Rice, millet, taro, yam, banana, oranges, coconut, cucumbers. • Southwest Asia: Emmer wheat, einkorn wheat, lentils, chickpea, barley. • Africa: Millet, African rice, sorghum. • Location of Giant’s Coffin (TU B5 and B6) in Mammoth Cave, Kentucky. • The adoption of agriculture is related to the needs of the local populations. Some societies remained as huntergatherers even up to presentday. • Major dispersion of family languages seems to be related to the expansion of food production technologies and migration of food producers. Example: IndoEuropean protolanguage. • Domestication of animals 2 • Husbandry or domestication of animals were activities that occurred after the domestication of plants. • Domestication of animals allowed humans to colonize and use difficult environments, such as the SaharaSahel where agriculture is very limited. It also allowed the development of technologies such as horsedrawn vehicles. • Map of Old World Civilizations (association of the origins of agriculture with the rise of ancient states/empires [civilizations]) (Map 26 in John L. Allen and Audrey C. Shalinsky. 2004. Student Atlas of Anthropology. McGrawHill Publishers, New York.) • Conclusions • The origins of food production of both plants and animals was a continual process. • It involved the purposeful cultivation of plants and herding of animals but also included the reduction in the mobility of groups (increased sedentism) and the invention of new technologies like groundstone lithics and ceramics. • Once this process was underway it laid the foundation for a series of human behavioral changes eventually leading to the development of complex societies. 3
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