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Where did Native Americans come from and when did they first arrive? Several lines of evidence, most recently genetic, have firmly established that all Native American populations originated in eastern Siberia.
It was about 13,000 years ago that the First Americans, people who came from Asia, worked their way past the melting glaciers of the last Ice Age and began spreading across North, Central, and South America - lands previously unscarred by humans and teeming with mammoths, giant bison, saber-toothed tigers, and beavers the size of a cow. But it's only recently that scientists have pieced together the elusive, compelling saga of that epic migration. And the more we learn about them, the more we must marvel at the courage, adaptability, enterprise, and enduring resilience of the First Americans. Most of us know little about the early Americans and the wonders they achieved. Some of them learned to hunt forty-ton whales from dugout canoes; others built a vast system of canals that irrigated crops on tens of thousands of acres. Fully a thousand years before the pyramids at Giza went up, people on the Mississippi River were constructing even larger pyramidal earthworks, and later, a thousand miles to the north, others built a city that would remain the largest in North America until after the Revolutionary War. In the cradle of civilization that evolved in Central America, the Olmecs, Mayans, and Aztecs built complex cultures and dazzling cities whose monumental structures and works of art still have the power to awe and inspire. This book describes the peopling of North and Central America and examine their amazing societies - the farmers and cliff-dwellers of the Southwest United States, the mound-builders of the Midwest, the Northwest Coast whale-hunters with their potlatches and totem poles, and the mighty, gods-driven cultures of Mesoamerica. It is a saga as breathtaking as it is surprising.
Glory, Trouble, and Renaissance at the Robert S. Peabody Museum of Archaeology chronicles the seminal contributions, tumultuous history, and recent renaissance of the Robert S. Peabody Museum of Archaeology (RSPM). The only archaeology museum that is part of an American high school, it also did cutting-edge research from the 1930s through the 1970s, ultimately returning to its core mission of teaching and learning in the twenty-first century. Essays explore the early history and notable contributions of the museum's directors and curators, including a tour de force chapter by James Richardson and J. M. Adovasio that interweaves the history of research at the museum with the intriguing story of the peopling of the Americas. Other chapters tackle the challenges of the 1990s, including shrinking financial resources, the Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act and relationships with American Indian tribes, and the need to revisit the original mission of the museum, namely, to educate high school students. Like many cultural institutions, the RSPM has faced a host of challenges throughout its history. The contributors to this book describe the creative responses to those challenges and the reinvention of a museum with an unusual past, present, and future.
People of the Earth is a narrative account of the prehistory of humankind from our origins over 3 million years ago to the first pre-industrial civilizations, beginning about 5,000 years ago. This is a global prehistory, which covers prehistoric times in every corner of the world, in a jargon-free style for newcomers to archaeology. Many world histories begin with the first civilizations. This book starts at the beginning of human history and summarizes the latest research into such major topics as human origins, the emergence and spread of modern humans, the first farming, and the origins of civilization. People of the Earth is unique in its even balance of the human past, its readily accessible style, and its flowing narrative that carries the reader through the long sweep of our past. The book is highly illustrated, and features boxes and sidebars describing key dating methods and important archaeological sites. This classic world prehistory sets the standard for books on the subject and is the most widely used prehistory textbook in the world. It is aimed at introductory students in archaeology and anthropology taking survey courses on the prehistoric past, as well as more advanced readers. It will also appeal to students of human responses to climatic and environmental change.
Krone der Schöpfung? Vor 100 000 Jahren war der Homo sapiens noch ein unbedeutendes Tier, das unauffällig in einem abgelegenen Winkel des afrikanischen Kontinents lebte. Unsere Vorfahren teilten sich den Planeten mit mindestens fünf weiteren menschlichen Spezies, und die Rolle, die sie im Ökosystem spielten, war nicht größer als die von Gorillas, Libellen oder Quallen. Vor 70 000 Jahren dann vollzog sich ein mysteriöser und rascher Wandel mit dem Homo sapiens, und es war vor allem die Beschaffenheit seines Gehirns, die ihn zum Herren des Planeten und zum Schrecken des Ökosystems werden ließ. Bis heute hat sich diese Vorherrschaft stetig zugespitzt: Der Mensch hat die Fähigkeit zu schöpferischem und zu zerstörerischem Handeln wie kein anderes Lebewesen. Anschaulich, unterhaltsam und stellenweise hochkomisch zeichnet Yuval Harari die Geschichte des Menschen nach und zeigt alle großen, aber auch alle ambivalenten Momente unserer Menschwerdung.
In The Death and Life of Great American Cities durchleuchtet Jane Jacobs 1961 die fragwürdigen Methoden der Stadtplanung und Stadtsanierung in Amerika, der "New Yorker" nannte es das unkonventionellste und provozierendste Buch über Städtebau seit langem. Die deutsche Ausgabe wurde schnell auch im deutschsprachigem Raum zu einer viel gelesenen und diskutierten Lektüre. Sie ist jetzt wieder in einem Nachdruck zugänglich, mit einem Vorwort von Gerd Albers (1993), das nach der Aktualität dieser Streitschrift fragt.
Die Natur der Dunklen Materie gehört zu den spannendsten Fragen der Kosmologie. Die Bestseller-Autorin und Harvard-Professorin Lisa Randall nimmt uns in ihrem neuen Buch ›Dunkle Materie und Dinosaurier. Die erstaunlichen Zusammenhänge des Universums‹ mit auf eine Reise in die Welt der Physik und hilft uns zu verstehen, welche Rolle die Dunkle Materie bei der Entstehung unserer Galaxie, unseres Sonnensystems und sogar des Lebens selbst gespielt hat. Eindrucksvoll zeigt sie, wie die Wissenschaft neue Konzepte und Erklärungen für dieses weithin unbekannte Phänomen entwickelt und verwebt geschickt die Geschichte des Kosmos mit unserer eigenen. Ein Buch, das ein völlig neues Licht auf die tiefen Verbindungen wirft, die unsere Welt so maßgeblich mitgeprägt haben, und uns die außerordentliche Schönheit zeigt, die selbst den alltäglichsten Dingen innewohnt.

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