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Islands on the Plains:  Ecological, Social, and Ritual Use of Landscapes

Islands on the Plains: Ecological, Social, and Ritual Use of Landscapes
Marcel Kornfeld & Alan J. Osborn, eds.
Salt Lake City: University of Utah Press, 2003
E78 .G73 I75 2003

Scattererd throughout the Great Plains are many isolated areas of varying size and ecology, quite distinct from the surrounding grasslands. Such spaces can be uplands like the Black Hills, low hills like the Nebraska Sand Hills, or linear areas such as shallow river valleys and deeply incised canyons. While the notion of "islands" is not a new one among ecologists, its application in Plains archaeology is.

The contributors to this volume illustrate the different ways that the spatial, structural, and temporal nature of islands conditioned the behavior and adaptation of past Plains peoples. This is a first step toward a more detailed analysis of habitat variation and its effects on Plains cultural dynamics and evolution. Although the emphasis is on ecology, several chapters also address social and ideological islands in the form of sacred sites and special hunting grounds.

Quoted from dust jacket.