A101.07NeoCiv - ANTHROPOLOGY 101 Introduction to...

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ANTHROPOLOGY 101: Introduction to Anthropology Unit 7 The Neolithic and the Rise of Civilization Neolithic Transition The transition from the Paleolithic (“Old Stone Age”) to the Neolithic (“New Stone Age”) was gradual The innovations of the Upper Paleolithic led to gradually increasing populations and increased population densities Growth was much more rapid than previously First stage of the transition involved increased efficiency at collecting wild plants & animals, accompanied by increased sedentism Called Mesolithic (Europe), Epipaleolithic (Asia), or Archaic (Americas) Starts about 14,000-20,000 BP Mesolithic Technological transition Smaller blades and composite tools More ground stone Intensification In favored locales could harvest an entire year’s plant food for a family of four in a few weeks Increased sedentism Increased community size Increasing population density Increased population density increased competition for resources This competition gave an advantage to cultivators Could produce more food in less area Paiute irrigated stands of wild panic grass
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Ojibwa sewed wild rice in favorable location Central California Indians tended oak groves A number of peoples around the world, particularly in North America, continued a similar lifestyle into the historic period Mesolithic-Neolithic This kind of environmental manipulation is not domestication or farming in itself It is a necessary first step toward domestication Over time manipulation of plants and environment became ever more sophisticated Lead ultimately to domestication and agriculture Cultivation From these first steps, some peoples eventually transitioned to full-blown agriculture Agriculture is a complex process by which people significantly modify their environments and plans and animals to increase their productivity One major alteration is relocating all the plants and animals to a single location In wild these are widely scattered Makes them more accessible and allows more productivity per acre of desirable species People also alter the environment in other ways to increase productivity Hoeing Weeding Scarecrows and fences Much of this precedes actual cultivation or agriculture Cultivation involves human intervention throughout the life cycle of plants
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This note was uploaded on 05/26/2011 for the course ANTH 101 taught by Professor Engelhart during the Spring '09 term at Montana.

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A101.07NeoCiv - ANTHROPOLOGY 101 Introduction to...

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