About this book
The authors examine the subject in terms of seven different disciplinary perspectives: social, ecological, genetic, linguistic, biomolecular, epidemiological and geographical. Twenty case studies, based primarily on archaeological and biological evidence, relate to three main areas: Southwest Asia, Europe, and Central Asia to the Pacific.
Introduction, David Harris. Part 1 Thematic perspectives: growing plants and raising animals - an anthropological perspective on domestication, Tim Ingold; ecology, evolutionary theory and agricultural origins, Mark Blumler; the spread of agriculture and nomadic pastoralism - insights from genetics, linguistics and archaeology, Luca Cavalli-Sforza; language families and the spread of farming, Colin Renfrew; tracking early crops and early farmers - the potential of biomolecular archaeology, Martin Jones et al; the impact of diseases upon the emergence and spread of agriculture, Les Groube; plate tectonics and imaginary prehistories - structure and contingency in agricultural origins, Andrew Sherratt. Part 2 Southwest Asia: the mode of domestication of the founder crops of Southwest Asian agriculture, Daniel Zohary; climate-induced changes in the plant resources of hunter-gatherers of the northern Fertile Crescent - preludes to cereal cultivation?, Gordon Hillman; the emergence of cultivation and pastoralism in the "marginal" zone of the southern Levant, Andrew Garrard et al; animal domestication - accident or intention?, Hans-Peter Uerpmann; the beginning of caprine domestication in Southwest Asia, Tony Legge; the context of caprine domestication in the Zagros region, Frank Hole; the one-humped camel in Asia - origin, utilization and mechanisms of dispersal, Ilsa Kohler-Rollefson. Part 3 Europe: the development of agriculture in Greece - when, how, who and what?, Paul Halstead; the cultural context of the first use of domesticates in continental central and northwest Europe, Julian Thomas; agricultural frontiers and the transition to farming in the circum-Baltic area, Marek Zvelebil; the first farmers of southern Scandinavia, Douglas Price; arboriculture in Southwest Europe - dehesas as managed woodlands, Richard Harrison. Part 4 Central Asia to the Pacific: the beginnings of agriculture in western Central Asia, David Harris and Chris Gosden; the origins and spread of agriculture and pastoralism in northwestern South Asia, Richard Meadow; new evidence for early rice cultivation in South, Southeast and East Asia, Ian Glover and Charles Higham; Jomon and Yayoi - the transition to agriculture in Japanese prehistory, Keiji Imamura; the origins and spread of agriculture in the Indo-Pacific region - gradualism and diffusion or revolution and colonization?, Peter Bellwood; people- plant interactions in the New Guinea highlands - agricultural hearthland or horticultural backwater?, Tim Bayliss-Smith; early agriculture and what went before in island Melanesia - continuity or intrusion?, Matthew Spriggs; the origins of tropical vegeculture - zingiberacene, araceae and dioscoreaceae in Southeast Asia, Jon Hather. Part 5 Conclusion: the origins and spread of agricutlure and pastoralism in Eurasia - an overview, David Harris.