The Anthropology of Hunter-Gatherers : Key Themes for Archaeologists book cover
1st Edition

The Anthropology of Hunter-Gatherers
Key Themes for Archaeologists

ISBN 9781472584021
Published July 13, 2020 by Routledge
176 Pages

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Book Description

This book provides a basic introduction to key debates in the study of hunter-gatherers, specifically from an anthropological perspective, but designed for an archaeological audience. Hunter-gatherers have been the focus of intense anthropological research and discussion over the last hundred years, and as such there is an enormous literature on communities all over the world. Yet, among the diverse range of peoples studied, there are a number of recurrent themes, including not only the way in which people make a living (hunting, gathering and fishing) but also striking similarities in other areas of life such as belief systems and social organisation. These themes are described and then explored through archaeological case-studies. The overarching theme throughout the volume is the use of ethnographic analogy, and how archaeologists should be critical in its use.

Table of Contents

Introduction: Why the Study of Modern Hunter-gatherers Can Help Us Understand the Past Making a Living: Hunter-gatherer Subsistence Moving on Up: Mobility and Settlement Society and Social OrganisationBelief SystemsLandscapeMaterial Culture and ExchangeConclusionsBibliographyIndex

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Vicki Cummings is Senior Lecturer in Archaeology at the University of Central Lancashire, UK.


The nature and format of the book would certainly lend itself to being an introductory text for early-stage researchers. Students new to hunter-gatherer archaeology will welcome this book as a simple access point to the vast body of anthropological literature on modern and recent hunter-gatherer communities. - Archaeological Journal Vol. 171 - Thomas Kador