Reading3-1 (dragged) 15

Reading3-1 (dragged) 15 - were invented to turn the sod....

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16 Reading 3-1 An Ecological Approach The geography of domestication might make more sense if we examined the ecological settings to see what conditions are most likely or most unlikely to be suitable for agricultural origins. This, of course, is what C.O. Sauer tried to do, but in this treatment, I shall make use of experience and hindsight. We may list the major climate or vegetation formations as: 1. Tundra and taiga. 6. Tropical forest. 2. Temperate forests. 7. Tropical savanna. 3. Temperate prairies. 8. Deserts. 4. Temperate steppes. 9. Tropical highlands. 5. Mediterranean woodlands. 10. Sea coasts. The tundra and taiga can easily be ruled out. To this day we have not been able to do much with them agriculturally. Reindeer were domesticated and some forestry is practiced, but there is little in the way of farming. The well-developed temperate prairies, Fig. 3, can be ruled out as being too dif f cult for primitive tools. They were not developed in North America nor in the Ukraine and Russia until special steel plows
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Unformatted text preview: were invented to turn the sod. Some of our most productive soils could not be exploited until drainage was developed as well. Indians of the North American prairie region who practiced agriculture kept to wooded loess soils of river terraces and woodland bottoms and avoided the prairie proper. White settlers who fol-lowed did the same, moving from woodland to woodland and skipping the prairie because they could not mange the sod. The only major crop that might be ascribed to temperate prairie is sun F ower ( Helianthus annus ) and it was initially cultivated in adjacent woodlands. Fig. R 3-2. Centers and noncenters of agricultural origins: (A1), Near East center, (A2), African noncenter, (B1), North Chinese center, (B2), Southeast Asian and South Paci f c noncenter, (C1), Mesoamerican center, and (C2), South American noncenter (from Harlan, 1971; copyright 1971 by the American Association for the Advancement of Science)....
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