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Christopher Watts

October 17, 2011 ANT 200 Lecture 5- Ancient North America Shift focus away from doing of archaeology (methodological concerns) and the theoretical concerns that underpin these methods (what does it mean to classify objects) Start to talk more about world pre-history. Aerial concerns. Culture historical. Where people were at certain times and what can say about them because of arch investigations and stuff Were starting from the end. From the most recent stuff to earliest stuff. Hes going to talk about archaeology of complexity and state societies. This lecture doesnt fit well within that discussion. Next week more generally about archaeology of complexity (some of things look for like writing, complex settlement systems) Groups in north America not classified as exceedingly complex (not like the Inca and stuff) Groups in north America are complex but not as complex as some of the other ancient civilizations He showed a map of north America. Circled: west coast, interior/great basin, southwest, plains, eastern woodlands, arctic and subarctic Archaeologists can divide geographical regions into cultural areas For archaeologists when look at north America see cultures fitting into certain geographical regions Eastern woodlands forest and plains east of Mississippi river Plains between Mississippi and the Rockies Deserts of Arizona in southwest. In this region (Arizona, new Mexico, Utah, parts of Colorado) general southwest West coast number of complex societies. Sometimes known as complex hunter gatherers Tonight focus on eastern woodlands. Talk about local archaeology (southern Ontario) and also the southwest Introduction colonization of NA after 15kya (thousand years ago = kya) o after 40,000 years ago people move east through Eurasia and eventually get to America o Earliest NA groups known as Paleoindians In parts of Europe and elsewhere these may be called upper paleolithic peoples Handful of paleoindian sites scattered in NA and parts of central and SA In Ontario and much of Canada, northern part of continent was covered with huge glacial sheet About 12,000 years ago it receded and started to expose southern Ontario In Ontario very fewafter 12,000kya see a few but rare. Probably like 12 Hunters and gatherers, foragers, move around landscape in search of food and plants Groups would want to be at certain resources at certain times of the year seasonal Those are the economic adaptations see in this time period Ca. 10 kya in NA: broad spectrum economies (description of life way take advantage of all sorts of resources game and plant foods) o archaic period populations o Hunting&gathering; small mammals, fish, seeds and nuts The Southwest- Introduction Major cultural traditions in the archaeology of the greater southwest (AZ, NM, UTAH, southwest of Colorado. Where the four states come together) Three major cultural traditions o Hohokam AD 300-1500 o Mogollon 300 BC- ca. AD 1150 o Ancestral Pueblo (Anasazi) AD 1- present o Mogollon essentially get absorbed by Anasazi so thats why the ending is ca. o Anasazi is a Navaho term, not a pueblo term so they prefer to be called the first thing o In southwest still many pueblo groups that live there These traditions grew out of earlier Archaic cultures o These groups grew out of the hunting and gathering groups that were in NA 10,000 years ago o Largely HG and adapted to desert environment These archaic traditions Were largely hunters and gatherers, even after they adopted early variation of maize ca. 2000 BC o After adopted maize and stuff their lifeways began to change and can start to see those changes starting at like 2000 BC (from 8000-2000 there wasnt much difference) o Maize originates in central America o Some people not even sure adopted as a food initially. Thought first used to make beer o Wasnt a pleasant food. Nothing like the corn we eat today- smaller. Not sweet o After 2000 BC start to see if fossilized more frequently o Over time they were experimenting with growing maize and introducing it to climates and regions further north than SA o Starting to selectively foster certain maize strands that were more productive o Started to engender new varieties of maize Selection and hybridization gave rise to more productive variety (maiz de ocho) ca. 500 BC o By this time see new types of maize after all the hybridizationo This is the common maize in the eastern woodlands o Connection as the food moves from the southwest to the eastern woodlands o See this maize after 500 BC Combined maiz de ocho with bean ca. 500 BC o Started to plant both. Important o Common bean (Phaseolus vulgaris) he showed a picture of it Advantages o Planting beans returns nitrogen to the soil (important if also growing corn because corn can make soil bad after just a couple seasons.) o This is probably why maize wasnt important in the diet until beans and corn both being planted because beans returned the stuff to the soil and so both could be grown for longer o Lysine in beans provides essential amino acid (maize does not have it!!!). needed to synthesize protein in the body o Together maize and bean provide comprehensive diet o Bean is an excellent protein alternative to meat o Introduction of beans is probably why there is an increase in agriculture after 500BC Use of domesticated food dramatically changes the lifeways of people in the southwest and the eastern woodlands Go from hunter gatherers to semi sedentary and then sedentary Not unique to north America, happens throughout the world This
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