many scholars are asked about
early human settlement in the Americas, they might point to a handful
archaeological sites as evidence. Yet the process was not a simple one,
and today there is no consistent argument favoring a particular
for the peopling of the New World.
Most researchers agree that the
were colonized late in the Pleistocene, some 14,000 years ago, but
this there is little consensus.
book approaches the human settlement
of the Americas from a biogeographical perspective in order to provide
a better understanding of the mechanisms and consequences of this
event. It considers many of the questions that continue to surround the
peopling of the western hemisphere, focusing not on sites, dates, and
but rather on theories and models that attempt to explain how the
Unlike other studies, this book draws on a wide range of
-- archaeology, human genetics and osteology, linguistics, ethnology,
ecology -- to present the big picture of this migration. Its
content considers who the Pleistocene settlers were and where they came
from; their likely routes of migration; and the ecological role of
pioneers and the consequences of colonization.
Comprehensive in both
and topical coverage, the contributions include an explanation of how
first inhabitants of North America could have spread across the
within several centuries; the most comprehensive review of new
DNA and Y-chromosome data relating to the colonization; and an
critique of recent linguistic theories. Although the authors lean
a conservative rather than an extreme chronology, this volume goes
the simplistic emphasis on dating that has dominated the debate so far
to a concern with late Pleistocene forager adaptations and how they
have coped with a wide range of environmental and ecological factors.
offers researchers in this exciting field the most complete summary of
current knowledge and provides non-specialists and general readers with
new answers to the challenging and intriguing questions surrounding the
origins of the first Americans.
of the American Continents
Approach to Human Biogeography
by C. Michael
Barton, Geoffrey A. Clark, David R. Yesner, Georges A. Pearson