Books  General Natural History  Environmental History 

Easter Island, Earth Island: The Enigmas of Rapa Nui

New Edition
  • Presents the latest archaeological and environmental evidence concerning what happened during the island’s prehistory
  • Features the first use of phytoliths as evidence of early horticulture on the island
  • Incorporates combined pollen evidence from three sites at different altitudes on the island; no other island in Polynesia has provided this type of combined evidence
  • Brings attention to the potential consequences of “ecocide” at a time when our civilization is at risk from human-induced climate change
  • Addresses views and research both supportive of and in conflict with the authors’ own perspectives, providing a broad consideration of what we know about this fascinating location and society

By: Paul Bahn(Author), John Flenley(Author)

400 pages, 227 colour illustrations

Rowman & Littlefield

Hardback | 08 Sep 2017 | Edition: 4 | #235158 | ISBN-13: 9781442266551
Available for pre-order: Due Sep 2017 Details
NHBS Price: £32.95 $43/€37 approx

About this book

Easter Island, isolated deep in the South Pacific and now a World Heritage Site, was home to a fascinating prehistoric culture – one that produced massive stone effigies (the moai) and the birdman cult – and yet much of the island's past remains shrouded in mystery. Where did the islanders come from, and when? How did Rapa Nui culture evolve over the centuries? How, and why, did their natural environment change over time?

Paul Bahn and John Flenley guide readers through the mysteries and enigmas of Rapa Nui, incorporating the records of early explorers, folk legends, and archaeological evidence along the way. They cover the island's geological and environmental history and explore its flora and fauna, illustrating how human actions affected the natural environment of the island. This fourth edition draws in: recent DNA studies of ancient human and animal bones as well as plant remains; evolving understandings of how the moai were transported; and current efforts to reforest the island.


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Biography

Paul Bahn, PhD, devotes his time to writing, editing, and translating books on archaeology, and he has a key research interest in prehistoric art as well as the archaeology of Easter Island. His numerous publications include The Archaeology of Hollywood and Archaeology: Theories, Methods, and Practice (with Colin Renfrew). He also serves as editor of Archaeology Hotspots, a series with Rowman & Littlefield of general-interest books exploring the archaeological history of particular countries around the world.

John Flenley is emeritus professor of geography at Massey University, University of New Zealand.

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