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Signs of Power: The Rise of Cultural Complexity in the Southeast
     

Signs of Power: The Rise of Cultural Complexity in the Southeast

by Jon L. Gibson
 

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ISBN-10: 0817313915

ISBN-13: 9780817313913

Pub. Date: 05/28/2004

Publisher: University of Alabama Press

Traces the sources of power and large-scale organization of prehistoric peoples among Archaic societies.

By focusing on the first instances of mound building, pottery making, fancy polished stone and bone, as well as specialized chipped stone, artifacts, and their widespread exchange, this book explores the sources of power and organization among Archaic

Overview

Traces the sources of power and large-scale organization of prehistoric peoples among Archaic societies.

By focusing on the first instances of mound building, pottery making, fancy polished stone and bone, as well as specialized chipped stone, artifacts, and their widespread exchange, this book explores the sources of power and organization among Archaic societies. It investigates the origins of these technologies and their effects on long-term (evolutionary) and short-term (historical) change.

The characteristics of first origins in social complexity belong to 5,000- to 6,000-year-old Archaic groups who inhabited the southeastern United States. In Signs of Power, regional specialists identify the conditions, causes, and consequences that define organization and social complexity in societies. Often termed "big mound power," these considerations include the role of demography, kinship, and ecology in sociocultural change; the meaning of geometry and design in sacred groupings; the degree of advancement in stone tool technologies; and differentials in shell ring sizes that reflect social inequality.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780817313913
Publisher:
University of Alabama Press
Publication date:
05/28/2004
Pages:
400
Product dimensions:
6.13(w) x 9.25(h) x 1.20(d)

Table of Contents

Figuresvii
Tablesxi
Preface and Acknowledgmentsxiii
1.Big Mounds, Big Rings, Big Power1
2.Late Archaic Fisher-Foragers in the Apalachicola-Lower Chattahoochee Valley, Northwest Florida-South Georgia/Alabama10
3.Measuring Shell Rings for Social Inequality26
4.Regional-Scale Interaction Networks and the Emergence of Cultural Complexity along the Northern Margins of the Southeast71
5.The Green River in Comparison to the Lower Mississippi Valley during the Archaic: To Build Mounds or Not to Build Mounds?86
6.Cultural Complexity in the Middle Archaic of Mississippi97
7.The Burkett Site (23MI20): Implications for Cultural Complexity and Origins114
8.Poverty Point Chipped-Stone Tool Raw Materials: Inferring Social and Economic Strategies129
9.Are We Fixing to Make the Same Mistake Again?146
10.Surrounding the Sacred: Geometry and Design of Early Mound Groups as Meaning and Function162
11.Crossing the Symbolic Rubicon in the Southeast214
12.Explaining Sociopolitical Complexity in the Foraging Adaptations of the Southeastern United States: The Roles of Demography, Kinship, and Ecology in Sociocultural Evolution234
13.The Power of Beneficent Obligation in First Mound-Building Societies254
14.Archaic Mounds and the Archaeology of Southeastern Tribal Societies270
15.Old Mounds, Ancient Hunter-Gatherers, and Modern Archaeologists300
References Cited317
Contributors365
Index369

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