Peopling of the Americas: The Great Plains and Rocky Mountains as Landscapes
Type de publication:Conference Paper
Résumé (en anglais):
Models of peopling of the Americas tend to focus on a few, widely dispersed early sites, concentrating on morphological attributes of artifacts and ecological processes. Although the sites and artifacts provide basic data with which to evaluate peopling scenarios, they are rarely used as problem solving tools to evaluate specific hypotheses. In this paper we discuss how landscapes and the perceptions of landscapes, in the context of populations migrating into new and empty territories, affects the migration and adaptation process. Landscapes are not immutable geophysical landmarks, but a process connecting 'topographies, descriptive terminologies for landscapes and political structures'. We focus specifically on the Plains and the adjacent Rocky Mountains, an area whose archaeological record we are familiar with and evaluate the effect of these landscapes on early migrants to this region.