Pigs and Humans: 10,000 Years of Interaction

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Pigs are one of the most iconic but also paradoxical animals ever to have developed a relationship with humans. This relationship has been a long and varied one: from noble wild beast of the forest to mass produced farmyard animal; from a symbol of status and plenty to a widespread religious food taboo; from revered religious totem to a parodied symbol of filth and debauchery.

Pigs and Humans brings together some of the key scholars whose research is highlighting the role wild and domestic pigs have played in human societies around the world over the last 10,000 years. The 22 contributors cover a broad and diverse range of temporal, geographical, and topical themes, grounded within the disciplines of archaeology, zoology, anthropology, and biology, as well as art history and history. They explore such areas as evolution and taxonomy, domestication and husbandry, ethnography, and ritual and art, and present some of the latest theories and methodological techniques. The volume as a whole is generously illustrated and will enhance our understanding of many of the issues regarding our complex and ever changing relationship with the pig.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780199207046
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press
  • Publication date: 2/3/2008
  • Pages: 400
  • Product dimensions: 9.30 (w) x 6.20 (h) x 1.30 (d)

Meet the Author

Umberto Albarella is Research Fellow in Archaeology at the University of Sheffield.

Keith Dobney is Wellcome Trust Bioarchaeology Fellow at the University of Durham.

Anton Ervynck is Fellow of the Institute for the Archaeological Heritage of the Flemish Community in Brussels.

Peter Rowley-Conwy is Reader in Environmental Archaeology at the University of Durham.

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Table of Contents

Introduction, Umberto Albarella, Keith Dobney, Anton Ervynck & Peter Rowley-Conwy
I. Evolution and Taxonomy
1. Current views on taxonomy and zoogeography of the genus Sus, Colin Groves
2. Current views on Sus phylogeography and pig domestication as seen through modern mtDNA studies, Greger Larson, Umberto Albarella, Keith Dobney & Peter Rowley-Conwy
3. The molecular basis for phenotypic changes during pig domestication, Leif Andersson
II. The History of Pig Domestication and Husbandry
4. The transition from wild boar to domestic pig in Eurasia, illustrated by a tooth development defect and biometrical data, Keith Dobney, Anton Ervynck, Umberto Albarella & Peter Rowley-Conwy
5. Culture, ecology and pigs from the 5th to the 3rd millennium BC around the Fertile Crescent, Caroline Grigson
6. Hunting or management? The status of Sus in the Jomon Period, Japan, Hitomi Hongo, Tomoko Anezaki, Kyomi Yamazaki, Osamu Takahashi & Hiroki Sugawara
7. Wild boar and domestic pigs in Mesolithic and Neolithic southern Scandinavia, Peter Rowley-Conwy & Keith Dobney
8. The economic role of Sus in early human fishing communities, Marco Masseti
9. An investigation into the transition from forest dwelling pigs to farm animals in medieval Flanders, Belgium, Anton Ervynck, An Lentacker, Gundula Muldner, Mike Richards & Keith Dobney
III. Methodological Applications
10. Age estimation of wild boar based on molariform mandibular tooth development and its application to seasonality at the Mesolithic site of Ringkloster, Denmark, Richard Carter & Ola Magnell
11. A statistical method for dealing with isolated teeth: ageing pig teeth from Hagoshrim, Israel, Annat Haber
12. Inter-population variation in recent wild boar from Israel, Goggy Davidowitz & Liora Kolska Horwitz
13. A dental microwear study of pig diet and management in Iron Age, Romano-British, Anglo-Scandinavian and medieval contexts in England, Tom Wilkie, Ingrid Mainland, Umberto Albarella, Keith Dobney & Peter Rowley-Conwy
14. The histopathology of fluorotic dental enamel in wild boar and domestic pigs, Horst Kierdorf & Uwe Kierdorf
15. Economic and ecological reconstruction at the Classical site of Sagalassos, Turkey, using pigs' teeth, Sofie Vanpoucke, Bea De Cupere & Marc Waelkens
IV. Ethnographic Studies
16. Ethnoarchaeology of pig husbandry in Sardinia and Corsica, Umberto Albarella, Filippo Manconi, Jean-Denis Vigne & Peter Rowley-Conwy
17. Traditional pig butchery by the Yali people of West Papua (Irian Jaya): an ethnographic and archaeozoological example, Jacqueline Studer & Daniel Pillonel
18. Pigs in the New Guinea Highlands: an ethnographic example, Paul Sillitoe
V. Pigs in Ritual and Art
19. Wild boar hunting in the Eastern Mediterranean from the 2nd to the 1st millennium BC, Anne-Sophie Dalix & Emmanuelle Vila
20. The pig in medieval iconography, Sarah Phillips

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