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  • Print publication year: 2015
  • Online publication date: May 2015

23 - Pioneer farmers at Brześć Kujawski, Poland


This chapter explores the development of agrarian societies in Japan and considers the way in which the relationship between rice farming and other foodways contributed to the broader social and cultural developments in the archipelago up to 500 CE. The study of the history of Japanese agriculture has focused on the cultivation of these potential staple plant foods. Domesticated animals played only a limited role in Japanese farming. The chapter discusses the origin and development of rice cultivation in Japan, while reviewing the evidence for the cultivation of other kinds of plant food. Yayoi culture, based on rice farming, is often regarded as replacing the hunter-gatherer, aboriginal, Jomon cultures that preceded it, cultures that are traditionally not regarded as directly ancestral to present-day Japanese. The defences at many later Yayoi settlements, and the move to upland locations, indicate raiding and fighting.

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