Note: Not guaranteed to come with supplemental materials (access cards, study guides, lab manuals, CDs, etc.)
Extend Your Rental at Any Time
Need to keep your rental past your due date? At any time before your due date you can extend or purchase your rental through your account.
Sorry, this item is currently unavailable.
Written by one of the leading archaeological writers in the world--in a simple, jargon-free narrative style--this brief, well-illustrated account of the major developments in the human past (from the origins of humanity to the origins of literate civilization) makes world prehistoryuniquely accessible to complete beginners. Up-to-date and state-of-the-art in contentand perspective, it covers the entire world (not just the Americas or Europe), placing major emphasis on both theories and the latest archaeological and multidisciplinary approaches. The main focus is on four major developments--the origins of humanity; the appearance and spread of modern humans before and during the late Ice Age, including the first settlement of the Americas; the beginnings of food production; and the rise of the first civilizations. For individuals who want to get acquainted with anthropology.
Table of Contents
Introducing World Prehistory
The World of the First Humans
The Birth of the Modern World
The Origins of Food Production
The Earliest Farmers
Chiefs and Chiefdoms
Mesopotamia and the Eastern Mediterranean World
South, Southeast, and East Asia
Table of Contents provided by Publisher. All Rights Reserved.
Three thousand, four thousand years maybe, have passed and gone since human feet last trod the floor on which you stand, and yet, as you note the signs of recent life around you--the half-filled bowl of mortar for the door, the blackened lamp, the finger-mark on the freshly painted surface, the farewell garland dropped on the threshold--you feel it might have been but yesterday ... Time is annihilated by little intimate details such as these, and you feel an intruder. Egyptologist Howard Carter, notebook entry on Tutankhamun's tomb, November 26, 1922 Golden pharaohs, lost cities, grinning human skeletons: Archaeology is the stuff of romance and legend! Many people still think of archaeologists as adventurers and treasure hunters, like Indiana Jones of Hollywood movie fame seeking the elusive Holy Grail. This enduring image goes back to the late nineteenth century, when archaeologists like Heinrich Schliemann could still find lost civilizations like Troy and excavate three royal palaces in a week. Today, few, if any, archaeologists behave like Indiana Jones. They are scientists, not adventurers, as comfortable in an air-conditioned laboratory as they are on a remote excavation. The development of scientific archaeology from its Victorian beginnings ranks among the greatest triumphs of twentieth-century science. Archaeology has changed our understanding of the human experience in profound ways. A century ago, most scientists believed humans were no more than 100,000 years old. Today we know that our origins go back at least 5 million years. Our predecessors assumed the Americas were settled in about 8000 B.C. and that farming began around 4000 B.C. New excavations date the first Americans to at least 12,000 B.C. and the beginnings of agriculture to about 10,000 B.C. Most important, archaeology has changed our perceptions of ourselves, especially of our biological and cultural diversity. Welcome to the fascinating world of archaeology! The sixth edition ofWorld Prehistorycontinues a long tradition of providing an interesting, jargon-free journey through the 5-million-year-old landscape of the human past. I hope you enjoy your sojourn in its pages. Highlights of the Sixth Edition The sixth edition ofWorld Prehistoryhas been revised throughout to reflect the latest advances in the field. It includes suggestions by dozens of archaeologists and students who have taken the trouble to contact me after using previous editions. This is an exciting time to be writing about archaeology. Many scientific advances are changing our perceptions about the past. The sixth edition contains important new discoveries about early human evolution, the late Ice Age, and the origins of agriculture. New and updated coverage of the field appears in every chapter, with an up-to-date Guide to Further Reading at the end of the book along with a glossary of technical terms and one of archaeological sites and cultural names. Updating and Rewriting New perceptions of world prehistory.Chapter 1 includes important discussions of archaeology and alternative perspectives on the past, reflecting new thinking on this important topic. Early human evolution.Chapter 2 discusses the latest advances in the study of human origins, including the latest fossil discoveries in Ethiopia and Kenya, among themSahelanthropus tchadensisandAustralopithecus garhi,both confusing and enigmatic predecessors of humanity. Origins of modern humans.Chapter 3 covers new research into the controversial issue of the earliest modern humans and fresh perceptions of Neanderthal ancestry and behavior. Origins of food production.Chapter 5 incorporates expanded coverage of the latest theories on the origins of agriculture and animal domestication. Chapter 6, which describes the first farmers, incorporates new