Journal of World Prehistory

, Volume 10, Issue 3, pp 375–438 | Cite as

Ancestral pueblo population aggregation and abandonment in the North American Southwest

  • Michael A. Adler
  • Todd Van Pool
  • Robert D. Leonard
Article

Abstract

After over a century of archaeological research in the American Southwest, questions focusing on population aggregation and abandonment continue to preoccupy much of Pueblo archaeology. This article presents a historical overview of the present range of explanatory approaches to these two processes, with a primary focus on population aggregation in those regions occupied by historic and prehistoric Pueblo peoples. We stress the necessarily complementary nature of most of these explanations of residential abandonment and aggregation. Case studies from the northern Southwest illustrate the continuous nature of these processes across time and space. We suggest that additional explanatory potential will be gained by the use of well-defined theoretical units to frame our current approaches. We extend the use of the “local community” concept as a theoretical unit of organization that, along with explicit archaeological correlates, should help advance our research into population aggregation and abandonment in this and other regions of the world.

Key words

American Southwest ancestral Pueblo population aggregation abandonment community 

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Copyright information

© Plenum Publishing Corporation 1996

Authors and Affiliations

  • Michael A. Adler
    • 1
  • Todd Van Pool
    • 2
  • Robert D. Leonard
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of AnthropologySouthern Methodist UniversityDallas
  2. 2.Department of AnthropologyUniversity of New MexicoAlbuquerque

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