The Emergence of Agriculture

Smith, B.D.

Paperback. 240 pp. Richly illustrated. W.H. Freeman & Company. 1999.

In this text, the archaeologist, Bruce Smith, explores the initial emergence and early expansion of agriculture and the transformations in human society that made it possible. He charts the course of the agricultural revolution as it occurred in the Middle East, Europe, China, Africa and the Americas, showing how basic archaeological methods and modern technologies, such as plant analysis, radiocarbon dating and DNA sampling are used to investigate this event. Although in the agricultural mind, the agricultural revolution is often seen as a one-step transition from hunter-gatherer societies to farming ones, Smith shows how truly varied the patterns of animal and plant domestication were in different parts of the world.
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