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Published: 02 September 2019

600 Pages

7-1/2 x 9-1/4 inches

ISBN: 9780190930127

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Bookseller Code (04)

Archaeology and Humanity's Story

A Brief Introduction to World Prehistory

Second Edition

Deborah I. Olszewski

This student-friendly textbook introduces the archaeological past from approximately seven million years ago through later politically complex societies. Now fully updated in its second edition, Archaeology and Humanity's Story: A Brief Introduction to World Prehistory does not attempt to discuss every archaeologically important site and development in prehistory and early history. Rather, it presents key issues from earlier prehistory and then organizes the chapters on politically complex societies using a similar framework.

New to this Edition:

  • A new Chapter 6 "Prehistoric Europe North of the Mediterranean" examines the archaeological background to changes in Europe, particularly in the period following the expansion of food producing economies from the Middle East, using the Bronze Age as a case study
  • A new section on the Aztecs in Chapter 13 "Mesoamerica, the Classic Maya, and the Aztec Empire"
  • A new feature "Further Reflections" discusses a variety of topics such as chiefdoms, the importance of "international" trade and exchange to early societies, the family structure of elites, and how elites consolidated their power or legitimacy
  • Part IV now contains all chapters on politically complex societies, including Chapter 14 "Andean South America and the Inka Empire" and Chapter 15 "Mapungubwe and Great Zimbabwe in Africa"
  • Detailed sections on early food production moved from Chapter 5 to the relevant chapters on Europe, North American Southwest, Eastern North America, China, Mesoamerica, and Andean South America
  • A new epilogue demonstrates how lessons from past societies could be useful for today's world
  • Map figures now include topography