Anthropology 1020E Chapter Notes - Chapter 6: Radiocarbon Dating, The Immediate, Pleistocene

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-env arc uses human animal as part of the natural world, interacting with other species in the
ecological system or ecosystem
-on recently importance placed on surrounding landscape and that it is important to see sites in
their setting and to consider the geomorphological and biological processes occurring in/around
-postglacial context 10,000 years ago:
evidence of vegetation (pollen, plant remains = information about climate)
fauna/animal remains: start with micro fauna (insects, snails, rodents) all sensitive to changing
Investigating Environments On A Global Scale
-first step to assessing previous environmental conditions is to look at them
>Evidence from Water and Ice
sediments of the ocean floor accumulate very slowly (few cm every 1000 yrs.)
sea cores also provide climatic information through the analysis of organic molecules in the
last 10,000 years have been relatively stable except for Little Ice Age in the Middle Ages
Ancient Winds: isotopes used for temperature studies and for data of precipitation; wind study
important to finding out why people did or didn’t do things (Vikings may have stopped Atlantic route
because of more wind)
>Ancient Coastlines
Coastlines effected first
Falls in sea level will expose important land bridges (Bering Strait)
In many cases beaches lie at higher levels through isostatic uplift or tectonic movements
Volcanic eruptions can also affect coastlines
Some beaches may not be vertical but are stratified horizontally
Coral reefs also provide clues to previous shorelines
George Chaloupka Australia rock art studies: sea rose, plants/animals changed, new forms of
technology for art making and new subjects
Studying the Landscape: Geo-archaeology
-Can now turn to methods for determining the effects of changing climate on the terrain itself
-geo-archaeology uses the methods and concepts of the earth sciences to examine processes of
earth formation, and soil/sediment patterns
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