Vol.63 No.3（251）, December 2016
PAPERS PRESENTED AT THE 62nd ANNUAL MEETING OF THE SOCIETY:
ARCHAEOLOGICAL STUDIES IN INTER-DISCIPLINARY APPROACHES, Part 2
- Environment change and utilization strategies for plant resources during the Jomon Period
- OBATA Hiroki
Abstract: The prosperity of the Middle Jomon culture in the Chubu district, especially at the foot of Yatsugatake Mountain, which is described as an “Enhanced Jomon culture” is thought to have been supported by the cultivation of legumes and chestnuts. Both cultivated plants are suitable to the climate of the region, have high nutritional value and a tolerance to long-term preservation. Cultivation of these wild progenitors lead to an increase in the size of both the edible part and the amount harvested. The successful increase in plant food products along with the high tolerance against decay contributed to the increase of the scale of the supported population. However, this style of subsistence, strongly dependent on a specific kind of food product, was vulnerable to environmental change and with the cultivation at an underdeveloped stage, the yield depended on the tolerance of the cultivated plants. Therefore, it is thought that the society had grown beyond its tolerance limit at the same moment that climate and environmental change exceeded the resistance limit of the cultivated plants.Keywords: Environment change; plant utilization strategy; plant cultivation; chestnut, legumes; Jomon.
- The social change during the shellmidden period on the Amami and Okinawa Archipelagos
- TAKAMIYA Hiroto
Abstract: The subsistence economy during the Shellmidden period on the Amami and Okinawa archipelagos was thought to be hunting and gathering, and therefore it was believed that the social organization consisted of bands during this period. This paper first examines the subsistence economy during this period, which was considered to have been hunting and gathering, based on faunal remains, however, there was insufficient plant remains to show people had gathered only wild plants. Due to the use of the flotation method in the region over the last two decades, we have finally been able to confirm the subsistence economy during this period, and the plant remains accumulated over this time have strongly demonstrated that it was in fact hunting and gathering.
The paper then examines the social organization during the Shellmidden period. From the Early 1 to the early Early 3 stage, the social organization was indeed the mobile band society. However, the social organization thereafter was characterized as undergoing “social evolution of a cyclical nature”. That is, while a social organization more complex than the band was recognized, the level of complexity was either merely maintained or had collapsed during the following period. A chiefdom, as seen in the Gusuku society, never formed.
As to the questions of why social evolution took place, and why a chiefdom society like the Gusuku period never evolved, the environment does not seem to be the likely cause. During this period, drastic changes in the surrounding environment have not been recognized. Instead, this paper argues that population increase was the most likely main cause of the social evolution. Also the reason for the cyclical nature of social evolution seen during the Shellmidden period was probably two fold. One is the character of the natural resources available in the region. The other, while difficult to examine archaeologically, is the ability of the aggrandizers who could not maintain a more complex level of society.Keywords: Shellmidden period; hunting and gathering; social evolution; natural resources; aggrandizer.
- The emergence of spouted shallow bowls in the Jōmon period and the significance of their development into vessels for boiling food
- ABE Akinori, KUNIKITA Dai, and YOSHIDA Kunio
Abstract: The spouted shallow bowl shape, which spread centering on the southern Tōhoku region toward the end of the Middle Jōmon period, differed from the shallow bowls of the preceding stage not only in having an attached spout, but also by coming into use as vessels for boiling food. In the Tōhoku region of the same period, large indoor hearths referred to as composite hearths appeared and became widespread, and in the southern portion of Tōhoku in particular a representative type flourished that was called the Uehara composite hearth, which incorporated a vessel embedded in the ground. The two developments are thought to represent an artifact and a related feature. Also, within the differentiation in vessel types occurring at the end of the Middle Jōmon, the emergence of a vessel for boiling that was distinct from the deep bowl is an important point.
In this contribution, the process of emergence of the spouted shallow bowl is reexamined, showing that this vessel type formed as the successor to two lines of shallow bowl forms from the period of Daigi 8b type pottery. Further, it is seen that the Class 1 and Class 2 spouted shallow bowls which thus emerged converged into a single class in the next stage of development.
Additionally, in order to clarify the characteristics of spouted shallow bowls as vessels for boiling, analysis of use marks and scientific analysis of the adhering carbonized materials were conducted. Based on observations and analysis of use marks, considerations are made of the method of heating and of the contents. Further, judging from the C/N ratio indicated by carbon and nitrogen stable isotope analysis, it is clearly shown that spouted shallow bowls and deep bowls used as vessels for boiling differed in their contents.Keywords: spouted shallow bowls; vessels for boiling; use marks; carbon and nitrogen stable isotope analysis.
- The trajectory of the transformation of archaeological theories and its historical background
- MIZOGUCHI Koji
Abstract: This paper investigates the trajectory through which archaeological theories have been transformed since the formation of archaeology as a discipline. It has been revealed that the onset of the social formation commonly described as the ‘post-modern/late-modern’, accompanied by the fragmentation and de-hierarchisation of value systems, lead to the situation in which the correlation between certain world views, sets of general theories, and sets of methodological components became mutually compatible and interchangeable. It is argued that this newly emerged situation has led to the condition in which, for the first time in the history of archaeology, we can assess the advantages and disadvantages of different theories and methodologies by examining their applicability and effects through actual archaeological practices. It is argued that this means archaeologists now have to confront an unprecedented degree of complexity in their daily archaeological practices that did not exist before the onset of the post-modern condition. It is concluded that choice is ours to decide whether we should tackle head on the complexity and invent new modes of archaeological communication, or if we should avoid doing so and choose to practice archaeology in simplistic manners, which implies the abandonment of disciplinary social responsibility.Keywords: archaeological theory; history of archaeology; modernity; post-modern; metahistory.
REPORTS, NEWS AND APPEALS
- Special feature: Reviewing the Eighth World Archaeological Congress in Kyoto 1
- An overview of WAC-8
- OKAMURA Katsuyuki
- Japanese archaeology and the world: Reflection on WAC-8
- Simon KANER
- A review of the session ‘Voices from Fukushima: Archaeology and cultural heritage on the frontline of natural and anthropic disasters’
- KIKUCHI Yoshio
- Foreign researchers‘ perception of the “Japanese Archaeology Fair”
- KIMURA Hiroaki and TACHIBANA Izumi
- Remains of modern warfare 1: The role of archaeological studies on the remains of modern warfare
- TAKATA Ken’ichi
- Report of attendance at the twelveth World Congress on Earthen Architecture (TERRA)
- ICHIKAWA Akira
- Report of attendance at the 200th memorial symposium of Kansai regional meeting of the Society “Current pottery chronology and characteristics of each period: From the formation to the end of Sue Pottery Production”
- HIDA Shōko
- Arimatsu Yui. Substratum of Empire: Human groups of the Near and Middle East on state formation process
- SHIMOGAKI Hitoshi
- Lambros Malafouris. How things shape the mind: A theory of material engagement
- NAKAGAWA Tomomi
- Edited by Shijōnawate City Board of Education. The History of Shijōnawate City, vol.5: Archaeology
- HAMADA Nobumitsu
- Recent archaeological excavation of the National special Historic Site “Mizuki Fortress”
- Research group of Cultural Properties and Archives, Kyushu Historical Museum
- Stone coffin at Hasekōji-shūhen site
- FURUYA Junko
- Report of the Okayama regional meetings of the society held in September, October and November 2016