Asian Perspectives, 1994 - Volume 33, Number 1 (Spring)
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Asian Perspectives is the leading peer-reviewed archaeological journal devoted to the prehistory of Asia and the Pacific region. In addition to archaeology, it features articles and book reviews on ethnoarchaeology, palaeoanthropology, physical anthropology, and ethnography of interest and use to the prehistorian. International specialists contribute regional reports summarizing current research and fieldwork, and present topical reports of significant sites. Occasional special issues focus on single topics.
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ItemReview of Anahulu: The Anthropology of History in the Kingdom of Hawaii, Volume 1: Historical Ethnography, by Marshall Sahlins; Anahulu: The Anthropology of History in the Kingdom of Hawaii, Volume 2: The Archaeology of History, by Patrick V. Kirch; Archaeology of the Lapita Cultural Complex: A Critical Review, by Patrick V. Kirch and Terry L. Hunt (ed.); Semelai Culture and Resin Technology, Memoirs of the Connecticut Academy of Arts and Sciences, Volume 22, by Rosemary Gianno; Disciplines Croisees: Hommage a Bernard Philippe Groslier, by Georges Condominas; The Excavation of Khok Phanom Di, a Prehistoric Site in Central Thailand, Volume I: The Excavation, Chronology and Human Burials, by C. F. W. Higham and R. Bannanurag; The Evolution and Dispersal of Modern Humans in Asia, by T. Akazawa. K. Aoki, and T. Kimura (eds.); Archaeology of the P'eng-Hu Islands, by Tsang Cheng-hwa; New Perspectives on the Art of Ceramics in China, by George Kuwayama (ed.); Pacific Northeast Asia in Prehistory: Hunter-Fishers, Farmers, and Sociopolitical Elites, by C. Melvin Aikens and S. N. Rhee (eds.)(University of Hawai'i Press (Honolulu), 1994)
ItemThe Izu Islands: Their Role in the Historical Development of Ancient Japan(University of Hawai'i Press (Honolulu), 1994)Four areas in which the Izu Islands played an important role in Japanese historical development are discussed in detail. The first of these is the obsidian trade from the source on Kozu Island that was exploited from the Palaeolithic until the Yayoi period. Kozu obsidian was distributed widely through central Honshu and was of major economic significance to the prehistoric inhabitants of this region. Another item traded from the Izu Islands was the limpet Penepatella, which was used to make bracelets that were spread through eastern Japan from the Initial Jomon until the end of the Kofun period. After the formation of the Yamato state, the Izu Islands took on a new importance because of their strategic geographic position on the sea route to the east. The presence of a number of ritual sites in the Izu Islands and on the Izu Peninsula can be explained by this political need to maintain communication routes from the capital to the eastern provinces. Finally. in the Ritsuryo period the Islands became known as one of the major sources of ritual groups specializing in turtle shell divination. Historical records show that individual diviners from the Islands played an important part in court rituals held in the capital. KEYWORDS: Japanese archaeology, Izu Islands. obsidian and shell exchange, ritual interaction.
ItemLolmo Cave: A Mid- to Late Holocene Site, the Arawe Islands, West New Britain Province, Papua New Guinea(University of Hawai'i Press (Honolulu), 1994)Lolmo Cave on Kumbun Island in the Arawe Island group off the south coast of New Britain, Papua New Guinea, was occupied between 6000 B.P. and the present. It is therefore one of a small number of sites that spans the pre-Lapita, Lapita, and post-Lapita periods. The chronology of the cave derives partly from tephras from dated eruptions on the north coast of New Britain. The evidence from the cave shows elements of continuity between all three periods in the use of obsidian from Talasea sources and in the production of shell artifacts. The main change in material culture is in the introduction of pottery and the use of Mopir obsidian in the pre- and post-Lapita periods, but not in between. The bone assemblages indicate ephemeral use of the cave in all periods, as does the generally low level of artifact deposition. The first occupation of Lolmo 6000 years ago coincides with changes in the nature of the evidence elsewhere in the Bismarck Archipelago. Taken together, these sites provide evidence for continuity between the pre-Lapita and Lapita periods, providing empirical contradiction to the notion that Lapita assemblages represent the incursion of people from the west and thus a break with the past. KEYWORDS: Lapita, pre-Lapita, Melanesia, formation processes, continuity.
ItemStratigraphy, Chronology, and Cultural Context of an Early Faunal Assemblage from Easter Island(University of Hawai'i Press (Honolulu), 1994)We report on the text excavation of a small trench at the coastal site of Ahu Anakena, Easter Island (Rapanui), Chile. The cultural deposits are a basal clay overlain by up to 1.3 m of calcareous sand. Conventional 14C dates on wood charcoal range from 660 ± 80 B.P. to 900 ± 80 B.P. Most lithic artifacts are obsidian, with the remainder of basalt or red scoria. The nonlithic artifacts include two bird-bone needles and a dolpin-bone tab. The vertebrate fauna differs later prehistoric Easter Island assemblages in that bones of marine mammals, and native landbirds are much more common, and bones of fish, humans, and chickens are rarer. The fauna is dominated by the Common Dolphin, Pacific Rat, and fish. Bones of fish are much rarer, and those of dolphins much more common, than in prehistoric midden assemblages from more tropical parts of Polynesia. The abundance of dolphin bones suggests that the prehistoric Rapanui had sailing canoes for hunting dolphins offshore until c. A.D. 1300-1400, which deforestation eliminated the raw material (trees) needed to make the canoes. Bones of extinct and extirpated native seabirds and landbirds occur throughout deposit. KEYWORDS: Polynesia, Easter Island, prehistoric extinctions, fauna.
ItemCultural Dynamics and the Ritual Role of Woods in Pre-Contact Hawai'i(University of Hawai'i Press (Honolulu), 1994)Although primarily used for palaeoenvironmental reconstruction, wood charcoal identification is ideal for the study of cultural dynamics if viewed as a class of material culture that actively reflects choices concerning domestic practices, ideology and ritualization, and political relationships. Archaeological evidence of ritual wood use from two temples in pre-Contact Hawai'i, supplemented with ethnohistoric data about traditional wood use, provides a test case that uses of woods underwent significant social transformations between A.D. 1400-1820. Variation wood use from these two sites demonstrates how the biological environment be imbued with cultural meanings, meanings that in turn illuminate how elite political and ritual strategies interact with a society's biological environment and ecological landscape. We propose that as a class of palaeoethnobotanical data, woods can be imbued with significant cultural value that can be used to track important shifts in cultural change and inform archaeologists about past social and political systems. KEYWORDS: palaeoethnobotany, charcoal identification, ideology, complex societies, Hawai'i, monumental architecture.
ItemEnvironmental Variability and Traditional Hawaiian Land Use Patterns: Manuka's Cultural Islands in Seas of Lava(University of Hawai'i Press (Honolulu), 1994)Environmental variability and patterns of Native Hawaiian land use are examined from the perspective of a relatively marginal locality on the island of Hawai'i. The traditional land unit of Manuka Ahupua'a is covered with large expanses of poorly weathered lava flows, but the coastal waters are rich in marine life. Traditional land use was centered within and near klpuka (islands of older substrate surrounded by more recent lava flows). Changing patterns of land use, residence, and mobility are examined. Evidence from Manuka is compared with the early-twentieth-century 'ohana model and found to be at variance. A more general theoretical model that addresses the relationship between environmental variability and an array of traditional Hawaiian residential patterns is proposed. KEYWORDS: Hawai'i, settlement patterns, traditional land use, mobility, environmental variability, 'ohana.
ItemDifferential Recovery of Pacific Island Fish Remains: Evidence from the Moturakau Rockshelter, Aitutaki, Cook Islands(University of Hawai'i Press (Honolulu), 1994)Effects of differential recovery on faunal remains from archaeological sites have been documented by numerous researchers in Europe and North America. However, similar research is lacking for Pacific Island fish assemblages. Here, the fish assemblage from the Moturakau rockshelter in the Cook Islands is analyzed to determine effects of recovery bias on relative abundance, number, and kinds of taxa represented. Smaller-mesh screens are shown to have significant effects on relative abundance estimates for smaller samples and for increasing sample size and number of taxa across all samples. Kinds of taxa recovered are shown to be dependent on both body size and element size of the taxa. Implications of these findings for Pacific Island subsistence interpretations are discussed and suggestions are made for curbing the effects of differential recovery. KEYWORDS: faunal analysis, screen size, Pacific Islands, fish remains.
Item33:1 Table of Contents - Asian Perspectives(University of Hawai'i Press (Honolulu), 1994)