The dominant social theory used by archaeologists has tended to focus on either small scale agency or large-scale cultural patterns and processes of change. The authors of this volume argue that archaeologists should use nonlinear models to more accurately model the connections between scales of analysis, and show how micro-scale variation can lead to macro-scale cultural change. This work examines the applications of nonlinear systems models within archaeology and evaluates the range of approaches currently encompassed within Complexity Theory.
Table of Contents
Contents: Preface; Continuing the revolution, Christopher S. Beekman and William W. Baden; As water for fish: human groups as complex ecaptive systems, Robert J. Hommon; Remember how to organize: heterarchy across disciplines, Carole L. Crumley; Agency, collectivities, and emergence: social theory and agent based simulations, Christopher S. Beekman; Factional formation and community dynamics in middle-range societies, Tammy Stone; Modelling prehistoric maize agriculture as a dissipative process, William W. Baden; Approaches to modelling archaeological site territories in the Near East, T.J. Wilkinson; Afterword, J. Stephen Lansing and Robert L. Axtell; Bibliography; Index.
Christopher Beekman is Assistant Professor in the Department of Anthropology at the University of Colorado at Denver and Health Sciences Center, USA. William W. Baden is Senior Research Analyst for Institutional Research & Analysis at Indiana University - Purdue University, Fort Wayne, USA.
’...the papers illustrate some very useful applications of how non-linear systems theory can provide a framework for describing the complexities of social dynamics.’ Australian Archaeology