Gardens of Prehistory: The Archaeology of Settlement Agriculture in Greater Mesoamerica

Overview

The prehistoric agricultural systems of the New World provided the foundations for a diverse set of complex social developments ranging from the puebloan societies of the American Southwest to the archaic state polities of Mesoamerica and the Andean region. From the tropical forests of Central America to the arid environments or northern New Mexico, Native American farmers made use of a distinctive set of cultigens and cropping systems that supported—with varying degrees of success—growing populations and ...

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1992 Trade paperback Fine. No dust jacket as issued. Trade paperback (US). Glued binding. 352 p. Audience: General/trade. previous owner's embossed stamp on first page.

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1992 Paperback Very Good 0817305653. Name stamped on fore-edge, otherwise text clean and tight; 0.92 x 9.04 x 6.05 Inches; 352 pages.

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1992 Soft cover Fine Trade paperback in fine condition.

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Alabama, 1992, softcover, near fine condition, archaeology, blm50.

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Overview

The prehistoric agricultural systems of the New World provided the foundations for a diverse set of complex social developments ranging from the puebloan societies of the American Southwest to the archaic state polities of Mesoamerica and the Andean region. From the tropical forests of Central America to the arid environments or northern New Mexico, Native American farmers made use of a distinctive set of cultigens and cropping systems that supported—with varying degrees of success—growing populations and expanding economies. Lacking most domesticated animals, so important to the mixed agricultural systems of the Old World, Precolumbian farmers developed intensive and resilient systems of agricultural production. These systems supported large societies of people who altered the landscapes they inhabited and generated a unique archaeological record of the evolution of farming in the New World.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

"A unique view of land use patterns that is an outgrowth of recent attention to household, rural, and hinterland components of ancient societies."
—American Anthropologist
Booknews
Ten studies from a symposium in Toronto, May 1987, draw on recent archaeological findings to explore the agricultural pattern of prehistoric Mesoamerica, what it can tell us about the methods and crops of the time, and how it influenced settlement patterns that are still around today. Covers peoples from New Mexico to the Andes. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780817305659
  • Publisher: University of Alabama Press
  • Publication date: 9/28/1992
  • Pages: 352
  • Lexile: 1490L (what's this?)
  • Product dimensions: 6.05 (w) x 9.04 (h) x 0.92 (d)

Meet the Author

Thomas W. Killion is a research associate in the Department of Anthropology at Boston University and an archaeologist in the Repatriation Office at the Smithsonian Institution.

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Table of Contents

Illustrations
Preface
1 The Archaeology of Settlement Agriculture 1
2 Factors Affecting Settlement Agriculture in the Ethnographic and Historic Record of Mesoamerica 14
Pt. I Settlement and Agriculture in the Arid Lands of Greater Mesoamerica 33
3 The Southwestern Ethnographic Record and Prehistoric Agricultural Diversity 35
4 House-Lot Gardens in the Gran Chichimeca: Ethnographic Cause for Archaeological Concern 69
5 The Productivity of Maguey Terrace Agriculture in Central Mexico During the Aztec Period 92
Pt. II Artifact Distributions and the Organization of Prehistoric Agriculture: Evidence from Lowland Mesoamerica 117
6 Residential Ethnoarchaeology and Ancient Site Structure: Contemporary Farming and Prehistoric Settlement Agriculture at Matacapan, Veracruz, Mexico 119
7 A Consideration of the Olmec Phenomenon in the Tuxtlas: Early Formative Settlement Pattern, Land Use, and Refuse Disposal a Matacapan, Veracruz, Mexico 150
8 Agricultural Tasks and Tools: Patterns of Stone Tool Discard Near Prehistoric Maya Residences Bordering Pulltrouser Swamp, Belize 184
Pt. III Prehistoric Cultivation, Landscape Modification, and Chemical Characterization 215
9 Intensive Raised-Field Agriculture in a Posteruption Environment, El Salvador 217
10 Prehistoric Intrasettlement Land Use and Residual Soil Phosphate Levels in the Upper Belize Valley, Central America 234
Pt. IV Summary and Critique 263
References 285
Contributors 325
Index 330
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