In this archaeological study, Arthur Demarest brings the lost pre-Columbian civilization of the Maya to life. In applying a holistic perspective to the most recent evidence from archaeology, paleoecology, and epigraphy, this theoretical interpretation emphasizes both the brilliant rain forest adaptations of the ancient Maya and the Native American spirituality that permeated all aspects of their daily life.
Severe droughts, damaging floods and mass migration: Climate change is becoming a focal point for security and conflict research and a challenge for the world’s governance structures. But how severe are the security risks and conflict potentials of climate change? Could global warming trigger a sequence of events leading to economic decline, social unrest and political instability? What are the causal relationships between resource scarcity and violent conflict? This book brings together international experts to explore these questions using in-depth case studies from around the world. Furthermore, the authors discuss strategies, institutions and cooperative approaches to stabilize the climate-society interaction.
Coping with Global Environmental Change, Disasters and Security - Threats, Challenges, Vulnerabilities and Risks reviews conceptual debates and case studies focusing on disasters and security threats, challenges, vulnerabilities and risks in Europe, the Mediterranean and other regions. It discusses social science concepts of vulnerability and risks, global, regional and national security challenges, global warming, floods, desertification and drought as environmental security challenges, water and food security challenges and vulnerabilities, vulnerability mapping of environmental security challenges and risks, contributions of remote sensing to the recognition of security risks, mainstreaming early warning of conflicts and hazards and provides conceptual and policy conclusions.
Publisher: Museum of Anthropology University of Michigan
Category: Social Science
Monte Albán was the capital of the Valley of Oaxaca, Mexico, ca. 500 B.C.¿A.D. 600, but once its control began to wane, other sites filled the political vacuum. Archaeologists have long awaited a meticulous excavation of one of these sites¿which would help us better understand the process that transformed second-tier sites into a series of polities or señoríos that competed with each other for centuries. This new book reports in detail on Ronald Faulseit's excavations at the site of Dainzú-Macuilxóchitl in the Valley of Oaxaca. His 2007¿2010 mapping and excavation seasons focused on the Late Classic (A.D. 600¿900) and Early Postclassic (A.D. 900¿1300). The spatial distributions of surface artifacts¿collected during the intensive mapping and systematic surface collecting¿on residential terraces at Cerro Danush are analyzed to evaluate evidence for craft production, ritual, and abandonment at the community level. This community analysis is complemented by data from the comprehensive excavation of a residential terrace, which documents diachronic patterns of behavior at the household level. The results from Faulseit¿s survey and excavations are evaluated within the theoretical frameworks of political cycling and resilience theory. Faulseit concludes that resilient social structures may have helped orchestrate reorganization in the dynamic political landscape of Oaxaca after the political collapse of Monte Albán.
This volume represents a collection of contributions presented during the Third Annual University of Chicago Oriental Institute Seminar Religion and Power: Divine Kingship in the Ancient World and Beyond, held at the Oriental Institute, February 23-24, 2007. The purpose of this conference was to examine more closely concepts of kingship in various regions of the world and in different time periods. The study of kingship goes back to the roots of fields such as anthropology and religious studies, as well as Assyriology and Near Eastern archaeology. More recently, several conferences have been held on kingship, drawing on cross-cultural comparisons. Yet the question of the divinity of the king as god has never before been examined within the framework of a cross-cultural and multi-disciplinary conference. Some of the recent anthropological literature on kingship relegates this question of kings who deified themselves to the background or voices serious misgivings about the usefulness of the distinction between divine and sacred kings. Several contributors to this volume have pointed out the Western, Judeo-Christian background of our categories of the human and the divine. However, rather than abandoning the term divine kingship because of its loaded history it is more productive to examine the concept of divine kingship more closely from a new perspective in order to modify our understanding of this term and the phenomena associated with it.
Who are we? How did the world become what it is today? What paths did humanity traverse along the way? Patterns in Prehistory, Fifth Edition, is a comprehensive and engaging survey of humanity's past three million years. It brings together theories and archaeological examples to pose questions about who we are and the means by which humanity evolved into what it is today. Ideal for introductory courses in world prehistory and origins of complex societies, Patterns in Prehistory, Fifth Edition, offers a unified and thematic approach to the four great transformations--or patterns--that characterize humanity's past: the origins and evolution of culture; the origins of modern humans and human behaviors; the origins of agriculture; and the origins of complex societies, civilizations, and pre-industrial states. Integrating theoretical approaches with archaeological data from the Middle East, Mesoamerica, North and South America, Egypt, China, the Indus Valley, and temperate Europe, Patterns in Prehistory, Fifth Edition, reveals how archaeologists decipher the past. It demonstrates how theory and method are combined to derive interpretations and also considers how interpretations evolve as a result of accumulating data, technological advances in recording and analyzing data sets, and newer theoretical perspectives. This new edition of Patterns in Prehistory provides: * Fresh insights with the addition of coauthor Deborah Olszewski, who has carefully reviewed and revamped the material with an eye toward making the text clearly understandable to today's students * Updated discussions throughout, including expanded information on post-processual archaeology, current methodologies, and technological advances * Approximately 250 illustrations and maps, more than half of which are new to this edition * Groundbreaking research on new discoveries of hominin fossils, genetic research, prehistoric migrations, the peopling of the Americas, and theories of the origins of agriculture and the origins of complex societies * Timelines for all relevant chapters as well as an overarching timeline for the entire book to help students place events in context * Extensively updated chapter bibliographies and chapter endnotes