3 Lectures 12 and 13 There are two theories on the origin of agriculture: a single origin with diffusion vs. multiple inde-pendent origins. The single origin plus diffusion concept is articulated in a thoughtful essay by George F. Carter (1977). However, the presently accepted dogma is that agriculture arose as independent inventions in various parts of the world at different times. There is evidence that agriculture originated in the Mideast over 10,000 years ago. Sauer (1952) has long speculated that the origin of plant domestication occurred in southeastern Asia but archeological evidence for agriculture appears later that that of the Mideast. Chester Gorman (Reed, 1977), based on evidence of crop remains in the Spirit Cave in Thailand, has pushed the evidence for agricultural beginnings as early as 10,000 to 14,000 years ago, but this is probably excessive (Charles Heiser, pers. commun.) and it is unclear if these plant remains were cultivated. There is now con-sensus that plant and animal domestication emerged in China at least 7000 to 9000 years ago. Of course,
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