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Coasts as Archives of the Past

  • Anja M. Scheffers
  • Sander R. Scheffers
  • Dieter H. Kelletat
Chapter
Part of the Coastal Research Library book series (COASTALRL, volume 2)

Abstract

What roles have human impacts and natural processes had in shaping the evolution of our world’s coastlines during the Holocene? Where, when and how did natural processes such as sea level rise or societies transform the coastal zone? At what scales and rhythms did these changes took place? What can coastal archives tell us about human-environment interactions? Geoarchaeological research attempt to understand the interplay between culture and nature, and more particularly how environments and processes have played a role in Holocene human occupation of the coastal zone. This approach has drawn on the multidisciplinary study of geologic or biologic archives of information, to attempt to differentiate between anthropogenic and natural factors. Other landforms such as uplifted ancient shorelines are evidence for crustal movements in particular in areas of deglaciation and glacio-isostatic uplift. Stepped cliffs, uplifted notches, coastal staircases of ancient coral reefs or fixed biological sea-level indicators allow coastal scientists to reconstruct the history of relative sea-level variations or neotectonics along coastlines.

Keywords

Beach Ridge Shell Midden Neolithic Settlement Photo Credit Geologic Archive 
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.

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  • Anja M. Scheffers
    • 1
  • Sander R. Scheffers
    • 2
  • Dieter H. Kelletat
    • 3
  1. 1.Southern Cross GeoscienceSouthern Cross UniversityLismoreAustralia
  2. 2.Marine Ecology Research CentreSouthern Cross UniversityLismoreAustralia
  3. 3.Department of GeographyUniversity of CologneKölnGermany

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