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Methodological Issues in Paleoethnobotany: A consideration of Issues, Methods, and Cases

  • Patti J. Wright
Chapter

Abstract

This chapter summarizes the current perspectives on paleoethnobotany, and the methods and techniques involved in the analysis of archaeological plant remains. The topic is not new, and for nearly three quarters of a century, paleoethnobotanists have not only contributed substantially to a broad range of archaeological questions, but have also complied detailed guides and summaries of state-of-the-art recovery techniques and laboratory analyses. What is new are the more careful and explicit treatments of the processes that have led to the formation of the paleoethnobotanical record. These processes – or what can be thought of as additional variables – are the subject of field tests and laboratory experiments that have been conducted around the world. Because understanding these processes can contribute to the advancement of paleoethnobotany and are essential to attempts at integrating information derived from plant and animal assemblages, they drive much of the discussions in the pages that come up later (for similar treatment of zooarchaeological remains, see Peres, chapter “Methodological Issues in Zooarchaeology,” this volume).

Keywords

Geographic Information System Archaeological Site Stone Tool Archaeological Context Plant Remains 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

Notes

Acknowledgments

Many thanks to Tanya Peres and Amber Van Derwarker for their invitation to participate in this volume and for their advice, enthusiastic support, and patient editing. Also, I would like to recognize the hard work and endless efforts of all of those individuals whose works I have cited in this chapter and the others who I missed because of lack of time and space. I am extremely thankful to many family members, friends, and colleagues who have motivated, inspired, and encouraged me.

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© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Springs PreserveLas VegasUSA
  2. 2.University of Missouri St. LouisSt. LouisUSA

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