Marking the Land: Hunter-Gatherer Creation of Meaning in their Environment

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William A Lovis, Robert Whallon
Routledge, Feb 26, 2016 - Social Science - 304 pages
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Marking the Land investigates how hunter-gatherers use physical landscape markers and environmental management to impose meaning on the spaces they occupy. The land is full of meaning for hunter-gatherers. Much of that meaning is inherent in natural phenomena, but some of it comes from modifications to the landscape that hunter-gatherers themselves make. Such alterations may be intentional or unintentional, temporary or permanent, and they can carry multiple layers of meaning, ranging from practical signs that provide guidance and information through to less direct indications of identity or abstract, highly symbolic signs of sacred or ceremonial significance. This volume investigates the conditions which determine the investment of time and effort in physical landscape marking by hunter-gatherers, and the factors which determine the extent to which these modifications are symbolically charged. Considering hunter-gatherer groups of varying sociocultural complexity and scale, Marking the Land provides a systematic consideration of this neglected aspect of hunter-gatherer adaptation and the varied environments within which they live.

 

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Contents

The Creation of Landscape Meaning by Mobile HunterGatherers
1
The Northern Latitudes
11
Initializing the Landscape Chipewyan Construction of Meaning in a Recently Occupied Environment
13
Places on the Blackfoot Homeland Markers of Cosmology Social Relationships and History
45
Markers in Space and Time Reflections on the Nature of Place Names as Events in the Inuit Approach to the Territory
67
Inuksuk Sled Shoe Place name Past Inuit Ethnogeographies
89
Network Maintenance in Big Rough Spaces with Few People The Labrador InnuNaskapi or Montagnais
116
The Southern Latitudes
131
Bonescapes Engaging People and Land with Animal Bones among South American Tropical Foragers
152
Unfolding Cultural Meanings Wayfinding Practices Among the San of the Central Kalahari
180
Continuity and Change in Warlpiri Practices of Marking the Landscape
201
Signaling Presence How Batek and Penan HunterGatherers in Malaysia Mark the Landscape
231
Synthesis
261
Marked Sacred Places of HunterGatherer Bands
263
HunterGatherer Landscape Perception and Landscape Marking The Multidimensional Construction of Meaning
276
Index
286

Physical and Linguistic Marking of the Seri Landscape Are They Connected?
133

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About the author (2016)

William Lovis, Professor, Department of Anthropology and Curator of Anthropology, MSU Museum, Michigan State University

Robert Whallon, Professor, Department of Anthropology and Curator of Mediterranean Prehistory, Museum of Anthropological Archaeology, University of Michigan

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