Questioning Collapse

Author: Patricia A. McAnany
Editor: Cambridge University Press
ISBN: 1107717329
Size: 20,27 MB
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Questioning Collapse challenges those scholars and popular writers who advance the thesis that societies - past and present - collapse because of behavior that destroyed their environments or because of overpopulation. In a series of highly accessible and closely argued essays, a team of internationally recognized scholars bring history and context to bear in their radically different analyses of iconic events, such as the deforestation of Easter Island, the cessation of the Norse colony in Greenland, the faltering of nineteenth-century China, the migration of ancestral peoples away from Chaco Canyon in the American southwest, the crisis and resilience of Lowland Maya kingship, and other societies that purportedly 'collapsed'. Collectively, these essays demonstrate that resilience in the face of societal crises, rather than collapse, is the leitmotif of the human story from the earliest civilizations to the present. Scrutinizing the notion that Euro-American colonial triumphs were an accident of geography, Questioning Collapse also critically examines the complex historical relationship between race and political labels of societal 'success' and 'failure'.

Beyond Collapse

Author: Ronald K. Faulseit
Editor: SIU Press
ISBN: 0809333996
Size: 11,56 MB
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New approaches to collapsed complex societies. The Maya. The Romans. The great dynasties of ancient China. It is generally believed that these once mighty empires eventually crumbled and disappeared. A recent trend in archaeology, however, focusing on what happened during and after the decline of once powerful regimes has found social resilience and transformation instead of collapse. In Beyond Collapse: Archaeological Perspectives on Resilience, Revitalization, and Transformation in Complex Societies, editor Ronald K. Faulseit gathers scholars with diverse theoretical perspectives to interpret how ancient civilizations responded to various stresses, including environmental change, warfare, and the fragmentation of political institutions. Contributors discuss not only what makes societies collapse but also why some societies are resilient and others are not, as well as how societies reorganize after collapse. Putting in context issues we face today, such as climate change, social diversity, and the failure of modern states, Beyond Collapse is an essential volume for readers interested in humanenvironment interaction and in the collapse--and subsequent reorganization--of human societies.

The Great Maya Droughts In Cultural Context

Author: Gyles Iannone
Editor: University Press of Colorado
ISBN: 1607322803
Size: 13,24 MB
Format: PDF
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In The Great Maya Droughts in Cultural Context, contributors reject the popularized link between societal collapse and drought in Maya civilization, arguing that a series of periodic “collapses,” including the infamous Terminal Classic collapse (AD 750–1050), were not caused solely by climate change–related droughts but by a combination of other social, political, and environmental factors. New and senior scholars of archaeology and environmental science explore the timing and intensity of droughts and provide a nuanced understanding of socio-ecological dynamics, with specific reference to what makes communities resilient or vulnerable when faced with environmental change.Contributors recognize the existence of four droughts that correlate with periods of demographic and political decline and identify a variety of concurrent political and social issues. They argue that these primary underlying factors were exacerbated by drought conditions and ultimately led to societal transitions that were by no means uniform across various sites and subregions. They also deconstruct the concept of “collapse” itself—although the line of Maya kings ended with the Terminal Classic collapse, the Maya people and their civilization survived. The Great Maya Droughts in Cultural Context offers new insights into the complicated series of events that impacted the decline of Maya civilization. This significant contribution to our increasingly comprehensive understanding of ancient Maya culture will be of interest to students and scholars of archaeology, anthropology, geography, and environmental studies.

Why Did Ancient Civilizations Fail

Author: Scott A J Johnson
Editor: Taylor & Francis
ISBN: 1315512882
Size: 20,79 MB
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Ideas abound as to why certain complex societies collapsed in the past, including environmental change, subsistence failure, fluctuating social structure and lack of adaptability. Why Did Ancient Civilizations Fail? evaluates the current theories in this important topic and discusses why they offer only partial explanations of the failure of past civilizations. This engaging book offers a new theory of collapse, that of social hubris. Through an examination of Mesopotamian, Egyptian, Roman, Maya, Inca, and Aztec societies, Johnson persuasively argues that hubris blinded many ancient peoples to evidence that would have allowed them to adapt, and he further considers how this has implications for contemporary societies. Comprehensive and well-written, this volume serves as an ideal text for undergraduate courses on ancient complex societies, as well as appealing to the scholar interested in societal collapse.

Bird On Fire

Author: Andrew Ross
Editor: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 0199912297
Size: 16,18 MB
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Phoenix, Arizona is one of America's fastest growing metropolitan regions. It is also its least sustainable one, sprawling over a thousand square miles, with a population of four and a half million, minimal rainfall, scorching heat, and an insatiable appetite for unrestrained growth and unrestricted property rights. In Bird on Fire, eminent social and cultural analyst Andrew Ross focuses on the prospects for sustainability in Phoenix--a city in the bull's eye of global warming--and also the obstacles that stand in the way. Most authors writing on sustainable cities look at places that have excellent public transit systems and relatively high density, such as Portland, Seattle, or New York. But Ross contends that if we can't change the game in fast-growing, low-density cities like Phoenix, the whole movement has a major problem. Drawing on interviews with 200 influential residents--from state legislators, urban planners, developers, and green business advocates to civil rights champions, energy lobbyists, solar entrepreneurs, and community activists--Ross argues that if Phoenix is ever to become sustainable, it will occur more through political and social change than through technological fixes. Ross explains how Arizona's increasingly xenophobic immigration laws, science-denying legislature, and growth-at-all-costs business ethic have perpetuated social injustice and environmental degradation. But he also highlights the positive changes happening in Phoenix, in particular the Gila River Indian Community's successful struggle to win back its water rights, potentially shifting resources away from new housing developments to producing healthy local food for the people of the Phoenix Basin. Ross argues that this victory may serve as a new model for how green democracy can work, redressing the claims of those who have been aggrieved in a way that creates long-term benefits for all. Bird on Fire offers a compelling take on one of the pressing issues of our time--finding pathways to sustainability at a time when governments are dismally failing in their responsibility to address climate change.

Living With The Ancestors

Author: Patricia A. McAnany
Editor: Cambridge University Press
ISBN: 0521719356
Size: 16,50 MB
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Contains an entirely new introduction that synthesizes scholarship on practices of ancestral veneration that has emerged since the 1995 publication of the first edition.

Cerro Danush

Author: Ronald K. Faulseit
Editor: Museum of Anthropology University of Michigan
ISBN:
Size: 14,65 MB
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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.

Interdependence Of Biodiversity And Development Under Global Change

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ISBN:
Size: 18,61 MB
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This new volume of the CBD Technical Series presents an analysis of the systemic character of global change, biodiversity and human development, and the relationships between them.

The Art Of Anthropology The Anthropology Of Art

Author: Brandon D. Lundy
Editor:
ISBN:
Size: 10,12 MB
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The Art of Anthropology/The Anthropology of Art brings together thirteen essays, all of which were presented at the March 2011 annual meeting of the Southern Anthropological Society (SAS) in Richmond, Virginia. Collectively, the essays in this volume explore not only art through the lens of anthropology but also anthropology through the lens of art. Given that art is a social phenomenon, the contributors to this volume interpret the complex relationships between art and anthropology as a means of fashioning novelty, continuity, and expression in everyday life. They further explore this connection by reifying customs and traditions through texts, textures, and events, thereby shaping the very artistic skills acquired by experience, study, and observation into something culturally meaningful. In this book, the contributors revisit older debates within the discipline about the relationship between anthropology’s messages and the rhetoric that conveys those messages in new ways. They ask how and why anthropology is persuasive and how artful forms of anthropology in the media and the classroom shape and shift public understandings of the human world. The papers in this volume are organized into four groups: Textual Art, Art Valuation, Critical Art, and Art and Anthropology in Our Classroom and Colleges. Brandon D. Lundy is an assistant professor of anthropology at Kennesaw State University.

The Modern Maya

Author: Macduff Everton
Editor:
ISBN:
Size: 18,12 MB
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Ancient Maya cities draw travelers from all over the world to Mexico’s Yucatán peninsula. But while tales of the “Maya collapse” give an air of mystery to the ruins, modern Maya still live in communities across the Yucatán, where they strive to maintain their culture and way of life despite centuries of political, social, and environmental disruption. Photographer Macduff Everton has spent more than four decades living and working among the Maya. His 1991 book on the modern Maya provided a superb photo-essay and ethnographic record of the Maya during a time of critical change and globalization. In this book, he masterfully updates his portrait of the modern Maya, while investigating the effects of NAFTA, tourism, the evangelical movement, world trade and maquiladoras, racism, sexism, and drugs on Maya communities. Combining splendid photography of ancient Maya sites and modern Maya communities with an illuminating narrative, Everton takes us into the homes and lives of farmers and chicle gatherers, ranch hands and henequen workers, as well as the Mayan-speaking urbanites who work at the resorts on the Riviera Maya. His long acquaintance with the Maya allows him to tell dramatic stories of how individuals and families have seen a way of life that was centered around the milpa (farm) and the cultivation of tropical forest products transformed by the effects of globalization and the necessity to labor for wages. At the same time, Everton also reveals the amazing adaptability of the Maya, who hold onto the essence of their culture despite all the destructive pressures from the outside world.