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Lecture 29 Part 1 – Landscape Level Organization

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Anthropology 2229F/G
Christopher Ellis

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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
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