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Ancient North America: The Archaeology of a Continent
Synopses & Reviews
Brian Fagan, one of the foremost living archaeological writers and an authority on world prehistory, has completely revised and updated his definitive synthesis of North America's ancient past. The book offers a balanced summary of every major culture area in North America, and places the continent in its wider context in human prehistory. Lavish illustrations, many new to the fourth edition, draw on North America's rich ethnographic record to illustrate key sites and artifacts. The chapter on first settlement has been heavily revised in light of new discoveries in Siberia and the Americas, and current controversies are surveyed. Chapters on archaeological theory, the Great Basin, the Northeast, the Northwest, and the Archaeology of European Contact reflect major advances, and important new discoveries and scientific methodologies receive full coverage.
Book News Annotation:
Provides a narrative account of what is known of the diverse ancient societies of North America, from first settlement before 12,000 BC up to European contact and beyond. Narrative description is balanced with explanation, with an introductory summary of major theoretical developments in North American archaeology, and discussion of specific controversies and theoretical insights interwoven throughout. Assumes a previous course in basic archaeological principles and terminology. This third edition offers updated material on theory, calibrated chronology, climate change, and Mississippian ideology and socio- political change. Includes many b&w photos of artifacts and key figures. Fagan teaches anthropology at the University of California- Santa Barbara.
Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)
Since its first edition in 1990, Ancient North America has been praised as a definitive synthesis of North American archaeology. The third edition continues the tradition in an extensive revision that includes new material on climate change and its effect on West Coast societies, additional coverage on the importance of ideology and power in Mississippian chiefdoms such as Cahokia and Moundville, and information on the latest discoveries in the Arctic and along the northwest coast.
The entire book has been updated from cover to cover, with new references and many changes that reflect important advances in North American archaeology. This edition remains a unique, authoritative overview of a complex subject, written in the jargon-free style that is the hallmark of Professor Fagan's writings.
A clearly written, authoritative synthesis of North American archaeology--the standard textbook on the subject, adopted at hundreds of colleges and universities.
Includes bibliographical references (p. -534) and index.
About the Author
Brian M. Fagan, Emeritus Professor of Anthropology at the University of California, Santa Barbara, is a leading authority on world prehistory. His many books include Floods, Famines, and Emperors.
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