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Download e-book for iPad: After Collapse: The Regeneration of Complex Societies by Glenn M. Schwartz, John J. Nichols

By Glenn M. Schwartz, John J. Nichols

From the Euphrates Valley to the southern Peruvian Andes, early advanced societies have risen and fallen, yet occasionally they've got additionally been reborn. earlier archaeological research of those societies has concentrated totally on emergence and cave in. this can be the 1st book-length paintings to envision the query of the way and why early complicated city societies have reappeared after sessions of decentralization and collapse.

Ranging broadly around the close to East, the Aegean, East Asia, Mesoamerica, and the Andes, those cross-cultural experiences extend our knowing of social evolution via reading how societies have been reworked through the interval of radical switch now termed “collapse.” They search to find how societal complexity reemerged, how second-generation states shaped, and the way those re-emergent states resembled or differed from the advanced societies that preceded them.

The participants draw on fabric tradition in addition to textual and ethnohistoric information to contemplate such components as preexistent associations, constructions, and ideologies which are influential in regeneration; monetary and political resilience; the function of social mobility, marginal teams, and peripheries; and ethnic switch. as well as featuring a few theoretical viewpoints, the individuals additionally suggest the explanation why regeneration occasionally doesn't ensue after cave in. A concluding contribution via Norman Yoffee presents a serious exegesis of “collapse” and highlights very important styles present in the case histories relating to peripheral areas and secondary elites, and to the ideology of statecraft.

After Collapse blazes new learn trails in either archaeology and the research of social switch, demonstrating that the archaeological list usually deals extra clues to the “dark a long time” that precede regeneration than do text-based reports. It opens up a brand new window at the previous through moving the point of interest clear of the increase and fall of old civilizations to their frequently extra telling fall and rise.

CONTRIBUTORS
Bennet Bronson, Arlen F. Chase, Diane Z. Chase, Christina A. Conlee, Lisa Cooper, Timothy S. Hare, Alan L. Kolata, Marilyn A. Masson, Gordon F. McEwan, Ellen Morris, Ian Morris, Carlos Peraza Lope, Kenny Sims, Miriam T. Stark, Jill A. Weber, Norman Yoffee

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Extra info for After Collapse: The Regeneration of Complex Societies

Sample text

Nichols and Jill A. Weber If societal collapse and regeneration occur as a result of the failure and reorganization of regional systems that structure networks of people and places, how are these processes manifested at individual communities within those systems? In this chapter, we address this question using evidence from Tell Umm el-Marra, the largest settlement in northern Syria’s Jabbul Plain (fig. 1) during much of the Bronze Age (ca. 2700–1200 bc). In the Jabbul region and elsewhere in Syria, collapse at the end of the third millennium bc entailed failure of regional economic and political networks, resulting in the disintegration of states into smaller political entities (Schwartz, chapter 1).

This situation appears in marked contrast to the agricultural regimes that appear to have characterized western Palestine in the EB III and the Khabur Plains of Upper Mesopotamia. Because these areas had concentrated intensively on one form of subsistence—agriculture—over any others, when negative forces came into play in the form of either climate change or political instability, these regimes lacked the flexibility to withstand such stresses and rapidly withered. This lack of flexibility might thus explain why these regions experienced long “dark ages” in the last centuries of the Early Bronze Age, before their eventual rejuvenation in the Middle Bronze Age.

Within this system, constant tension exists between the two political actions, one striving to concentrate power in the hands of one individual or a single authoritative group or class within the society, while the other attempts to offset the attainment of absolute power by maintaining an emphasis on collective political authority (Blanton et al. 1996:2; Fleming 2004:180; Porter 2002b:167). While Blanton and his colleagues used their model to better elucidate patterns of political action in ancient Mesoamerica (Blanton et al.

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