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Article contents

Prehistoric human impacts on Rapa, French Polynesia

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  02 January 2015

Douglas Kennett
Affiliation:
1Department of Anthropology, University of Oregon, USA
Atholl Anderson
Affiliation:
2Division of Archaeology and Natural History, The Australian National University, Australia
Matthew Prebble
Affiliation:
2Division of Archaeology and Natural History, The Australian National University, Australia
Eric Conte
Affiliation:
3Department of Archaeology, University of French Polynesia, French Polynesia
John Southon
Affiliation:
4Department of Earth Sciences, University of California, Irvine, USA

Extract

New excavations and survey on the island of Rapa have shown that a rockshelter was occupied by early settlers around AD 1200 and the first hill forts were erected about 300 years later. Refortification occurred up to the contact period and proliferated around AD 1700. Taro cultivation in terraced pond-fields kept pace with the construction of forts. The authors make a connection between fort-building and making pond-fields, demonstrating that the pressure on resources provoked both the intensification of agriculture and hostility between the communities of the small island.

Type
Research
Copyright
Copyright © Antiquity Publications Ltd. 2006

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