Anthropology 2229F/G Lecture Notes - Webct

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Published on 18 Jul 2012
Department
Lecture 29 Part 1 Landscape Level Organization
Landscape Level
o Concerned with the distribution across the landscape to find out
about socio-political systems
o Hunter-gatherers, the distribution on the landscape is dependent on
distribution of resources
Primary determinant
Environmental variables
o As societies become more complex, social factors influence
distribution of sites
Social and political factors become more important, if not the
most important
Informative of social patterns
Arrangement of sites close together makes them easy to
manage politically
o E.g. Eastern Valley of Mexico, Mesoamerica
See chart on WebCT
Virtually all sites are known and sites are well dated
Heartland of the Aztec civilization
Formative Period: 1500-500 BC
When people started living in agricultural villages, led
to state-level societies
Divided into early, middle, late and terminal formative
periods
Early Formative Period
Settlement Types
o Many permanent sites
o Small villages, little variability in domestic sites
o Small farming villages
o No evidence of public buildings
Status Distinctions
o No differences that are inherited
o All houses are very similar
o No special burials, etc.
o Distinctions based on age and gender
Settlement Patterning
o Most patterning based on the environment
o Best water, soils, etc.
o Environment determines where sites are built
o Best for agriculture
Probably a tribal society, but small scale
Middle Formative Period
Settlement Types
o Small villages as well as larger villages
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Document Summary

Lecture 29 part 1 landscape level organization. Landscape level: concerned with the distribution across the landscape to find out about socio-political systems, hunter-gatherers, the distribution on the landscape is dependent on distribution of resources. Environmental variables: as societies become more complex, social factors influence distribution of sites. Social and political factors become more important, if not the most important. Arrangement of sites close together makes them easy to manage politically: e. g. Virtually all sites are known and sites are well dated. When people started living in agricultural villages, led to state-level societies. Divided into early, middle, late and terminal formative periods. Settlement types: many permanent sites, small villages, little variability in domestic sites, small farming villages, no evidence of public buildings. Status distinctions: no differences that are inherited, all houses are very similar, no special burials, etc, distinctions based on age and gender.

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