After Collapse: The Regeneration of Complex Societies

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Overview


From the Euphrates Valley to the southern Peruvian Andes, early complex societies have risen and fallen, but in some cases they have also been reborn. Prior archaeological investigation of these societies has focused primarily on emergence and collapse. This is the first book-length work to examine the question of how and why early complex urban societies have reappeared after periods of decentralization and collapse. Ranging widely across the Near East, the Aegean, East Asia, Mesoamerica, and the Andes, these cross-cultural studies expand our understanding of social evolution by examining how societies were transformed during the period of radical change now termed “collapse.” They seek to discover how societal complexity reemerged, how second-generation states formed, and how these re-emergent states resembled or differed from the complex societies that preceded them. The contributors draw on material culture as well as textual and ethnohistoric data to consider such factors as preexistent institutions, structures, and ideologies that are influential in regeneration; economic and political resilience; the role of social mobility, marginal groups, and peripheries; and ethnic change. In addition to presenting a number of theoretical viewpoints, the contributors also propose reasons why regeneration sometimes does not occur after collapse. A concluding contribution by Norman Yoffee provides a critical exegesis of “collapse” and highlights important patterns found in the case histories related to peripheral regions and secondary elites, and to the ideology of statecraft. After Collapse blazes new research trails in both archaeology and the study of social change, demonstrating that the archaeological record often offers more clues to the “dark ages” that precede regeneration than do text-based studies. It opens up a new window on the past by shifting the focus away from the rise and fall of ancient civilizations to their often more telling fall and rise.

CONTRIBUTORS
Bennet Bronson, Arlen F. Chase, Diane Z. Chase, Christina A. Conlee, Lisa Cooper, Timothy S. Hare, Alan L. Kolata, Marilyn A. Masson, Gordon F. McEwan, Ellen Morris, Ian Morris, Carlos Peraza Lope, Kenny Sims, Miriam T. Stark, Jill A. Weber, Norman Yoffee

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

“The impact of this book will be long-lasting, as each of the studies are quite impressive new analyses of recent archaeological studies.”—Jonathan Kenoyer, University of Wisconsin, Madison
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780816525096
  • Publisher: University of Arizona Press
  • Publication date: 5/25/2006
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Pages: 336
  • Product dimensions: 6.20 (w) x 9.30 (h) x 0.90 (d)

Meet the Author


Glenn M. Schwartz is Whiting Professor of Archaeology at the Johns Hopkins University and coauthor of The Archaeology of Syria: From Complex Hunter-Gatherers to Early Urban Societies. John J. Nichols received his Ph.D. in Near Eastern archaeology from The Johns Hopkins University in 2004.
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Table of Contents

1 From collapse to regeneration 3
2 The demise and regeneration of Bronze Age urban centers in the Euphrates Valley of Syria 18
3 Amorites, onagers, and social reorganization in Middle Bronze Age Syria 38
4 "Lo, nobles lament, the poor rejoice" : state formation in the wake of social flux 58
5 The collapse and regeneration of complex society in Greece, 1500-500 B.C. 72
6 Inca state origins : collapse and regeneration in the Southern Peruvian Andes 85
7 Regeneration as transformation : postcollapse society in Nasca, Peru 99
8 After state collapse : how Tumilaca communities developed in the Upper Moquegua Valley, Peru 114
9 Patterns of political regeneration in Southeast and East Asia 137
10 From Funan to Angkor : collapse and regeneration in ancient Cambodia 144
11 Framing the Maya collapse : continuity, discontinuity, method, and practice in the classic to postclassic Southern Maya Lowlands 168
12 Postclassic Maya society regenerated at Mayapan 188
13 Before and after collapse : reflections on the regeneration of social complexity 208
14 Notes on regeneration 222
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