An Imperfect Balance: Landscape Transformations in the Pre-Columbian Americas

An Imperfect Balance: Landscape Transformations in the Pre-Columbian Americas

by David L. Lentz
     
 

ISBN-10: 0231111568

ISBN-13: 9780231111560

Pub. Date: 09/28/2000

Publisher: Columbia University Press

We often envision the New World before the arrival of the Europeans as a land of pristine natural beauty and undisturbed environments. However, David Lentz offers an alternative view by detailing the impact of native cultures on these ecosystems prior to their contact with Europeans. Drawing on a wide range of experts from the fields of paleoclimatology, historical

Overview

We often envision the New World before the arrival of the Europeans as a land of pristine natural beauty and undisturbed environments. However, David Lentz offers an alternative view by detailing the impact of native cultures on these ecosystems prior to their contact with Europeans. Drawing on a wide range of experts from the fields of paleoclimatology, historical ecology, paleontology, botany, geology, conservation science, and resource management, this book unlocks the secret of how the Western Hemisphere's indigenous inhabitants influenced and transformed their natural environment.

A rare combination of collaborators uncovers the changes that took place in North America, Mexico, Central America, the Andes, and Amazonia. Each section of the book has been comprehensively arranged so that a botanical description of the natural vegetation of the region is coupled with a set of case studies outlining local human influences. From modifications of vegetation, to changes in soil, wildlife, microclimate, hydrology, and the land surface itself, this collection addresses one of the great issues of our time: the human modification of the earth.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780231111560
Publisher:
Columbia University Press
Publication date:
09/28/2000
Series:
Historical Ecology Series
Pages:
788
Product dimensions:
7.24(w) x 10.22(h) x 1.33(d)
Lexile:
1420L (what's this?)

Table of Contents

4. Anthropocentric Food Webs in the Precolumbian Americas, by David L. Lentz
3. Vegetation in the Floristic Regions of North and Central America, by Andrew M. Greller
2. Climate Changes in the Northern American Tropics and Subtropics since the Last Ice Age: Implications for Environment and Culture, by David A. Hodell, Mark Brenner, and Jason H. Curtis
1. Introduction: Definitions and Conceptual Underpinnings, by David L. Lentz Foreword, by William Denevan Summary and Conclusions
15. The Lower Amazon: A Dynamic Human Habitat, by Anna C. Roosevelt
14. Lowland Vegetation of Tropical South America--An Overview, by Douglas Daly and John Mitchell
13. Andean Land Use at the Cusp of History, by Terence N. D'Altroy
12. The Lake Titicaca Basin: A Precolumbian Built Landscape, by Clark L. Erickson
11. Vegetation of the Tropical Andes, by James Luteyn and Steven Churchill
10. Hohokam Impacts on Sonoran Desert Environment, by Suzanne Fish
9. Native Farming Systems and Ecosystems in the Mississippi River Valley, by Gayle J. Fritz
8. Precolumbian Silviculture and Indigenous Management of Neotropical Forests, by Charles Peters
7. Stability and Instability in Prehispanic May a Landscapes, by Nicholas Dunning and Timothy Beach
6. Prehispanic Water Management and Agricultural Intensification in Mexico and Venezuela: Implications for Contemporary Ecological Planning, by Charles S. Spencer
5. Prehispanic Agricultural Systems in the Basin of Mexico, by Emily McClung de Tapia

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