Landscape Archaeology (4)
Landscape Archaeology (4) ANTH 4953
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This 3 page Class Notes was uploaded by Heidi Hilts on Monday March 7, 2016. The Class Notes belongs to ANTH 4953 at University of Oklahoma taught by Asa R. Randall in Spring 2016. Since its upload, it has received 6 views. For similar materials see Landscape Archaeology in anthropology, evolution, sphr at University of Oklahoma.
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Date Created: 03/07/16
Landscape Archaeology Class notes week 4 2/11/16 Fundamental concepts in Historical Ecology Space o Scale Effective scale Sense of spatial size Extent and grain Levels How we relate different scales together o Pattern o Region Arbitrary Perceived o Boundaries Edge Center Time o Scale Ex. Millennial vs. daily o Process vs. event o Periodicity Predictable, unpredictable Tempo Levels – points along an analytical scale Heterogeneity Composition o Variety and abundance of resources o Richness – number of different resource type o Evenness/equitability Relative abundance of different resources Diversity Composite measure of richness and evenness o Patch distribution – patches are areas of like-distribution o Regions-fundamental unit of analysis in historical ecology Arbitrary Define region’s extent and placement in advance of research o Boundary Arbitrary boundaries should be avoided except in initial stages Physical Rivers Mountains Ecological Boundaries of biomes or communities or organism are ecotones Cultural Administrative o Political, economic Linguistic Contextual Similar histories Ethnic History and time o Sequence of events A series of events or processes o Contingency Each process or region Time and Perception o How time and change in landscape patterns is perceived will influence decision making processes o Risk and uncertainty How does a community plan for the unknown o Vulnerability How does a community make itself susceptible to change or catastrophe social history o differences in how the landscapes is perceived may result in contradictions o levels control hierarchy decisions/processes at higher levels affect the operation of lower levels scalar hierarchy any level can affect any other o hierarchy relation of elements to one another when they are unranked or when they possess the potential for being ranked in a number of ways Balee, Historical Ecology: Premises and Postulates Preliminary definitions and concepts: historical ecology concerns itself with relationship between humans and biosphere (part of earth where things live) o distinct perspective on human societies and their interactions with other life forms nd the land dialectical ecology – synonym for historical ecology o assumes that historical events affect biocultural developments focuses on the interpretation of culture and environment rather than on the adaptation of human beings of the environment o relationship is a dialogue not a dichotomy postulates: o much of the biosphere affected by human activity o human activity does not necessarily lead to degradation of biosphere and extinction of species nor does it necessarily create a more habitable biosphere by increasing abundance and speciosity o different kinds of sociopolitical and economic systems tend to result in qualitatively unlike effects on biosphere, on the abundance and speciosity of nonhuman life forms and on historical trajectory of subsequent human sociopolitical and economic systems in same regions o human communities and cultures together with the landscapes and regions with which they interact over time can be understood as total phenomena ecologically noble savage: man’s natural custodian for environment homo-devastans – humankind itself accountable for destruction of environment while human hunters certainly killed individuals of Pleistocene megafauna, it remains to be proved whether they alone caused extinction of taxonomic groups o homo devastans dogmatic and unempirical post. 2: o evidence that human beings did not do irreversible damage to environment through creation of certain landscapes domestication in some Neolithic regions may have increased total number of species fires increase biodiversity reduce fuels, reduce likelihood of wildfires o in interacting with nature, people inflict culture upon it post 3: o if some Amazonian peoples have by their activities enhanced biodiversity, not all non- industrial political economics have had a similar result o whether states are intrinsically destructive of bioenvironmental diversity is an ethnographic and historical question, not biological one post. 4: o attempt to view society or culture and nature as a single phenomenon dialectically structured and historically determined unity that exists o if it is not human nature to be either nemesis or stewards of non-human life-forms, human species cannot be considered as wholly independent from other life forms
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