Good Fences Make Good Neighbours Understanding the Spatial Logic of Hunter-Gatherer Residence Patterning
Publication Type:Conference Paper
Over the past several decades, the spatial organization of hunter-gatherer sites has been a subject of immense interest to many archaeologists. Differing economic strategies (communal versus individual hunting, gathering, processing) are often presented as determining how living space is organized within hunter-gatherer sites. In addition, social factors like intra-household sharing, and relatedness, have also been suggested as determinants for residence arrangement and spacing. The notion by Yellen (1977) and Whitelaw (1983) that hunter-gatherers map their economic and social relations in space suggests that groups characterized by dissimilar economic and social relations might organize space in distinctive ways. This idea is pursued via the recent analysis of site plans associated with three hunter-gatherer groups characterized by differing economic and social relations; the prehistoric Thule of the eastern and central Canadian Arctic, the Dobe! Kung of the western Kalahari, and the Tyua of the eastern Kalahari. The residence patterns of each group are analyzed using network analysis, and the results presented.