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The Prehistory of Home

ISBN: 9780520272217 | 0520272218
Format: Hardcover
Publisher: Univ of California Pr
Pub. Date: 4/18/2012

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Many animals build shelters, but only humans build homes. No other species creates such a variety of dwellings, and for humans, there is no place like home. Drawing examples from across the archaeological record and around the world, archaeologist Jerry Moore recounts the cultural development of the uniquely human imperative to maintain domestic dwellings. He shows how our houses allow us to physically adapt to the environment and conceptually order the cosmos, and explains how we fabricate dwellings and, in the process, construct our lives. The Prehistory of Homeconnects events and sites that are ancient and distant to lives and places that are current and near. The absorbing narrative spans the earliest evidence for shelters and domestic activity to the housing needs of nomads to the process of increasing sedentism and adjustments to apartment living. Along the way, Moore points out how human dwellings enclose diverse social groups--from nuclear families to entire clans, from hundreds of people to solitary hermits--how houses function as symbols of equality or proclaim the social divides between people, and how they shield us not only from the elements, but increasingly from inchoate fear.


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