AdvisorStiner, Mary C.
MetadataShow full item record
PublisherThe University of Arizona.
RightsCopyright © is held by the author. Digital access to this material is made possible by the University Libraries, University of Arizona. Further transmission, reproduction or presentation (such as public display or performance) of protected items is prohibited except with permission of the author.
AbstractI examine Clovis subsistence strategies within the broader context of predatory adaptations in cross-cultural and cross-species frameworks. To derive implications for labor activities of Clovis men and women, I also address the relationship between subsistence variation and the organization of labor for a sample of recent hunting and gathering populations. I begin by placing humans within a broad zoological context. Examining variation in hunter-gatherer subsistence in relation to predatory-prey relationships reveals how humans are both subject to and alter the constraints governing other terrestrial carnivorous species. It is concluded that human populations often utilize an inordinately broad size range of prey relative to other predators. I then explore human prey selection within an optimal foraging framework with respect to variance and risk. Based on predicted relationships between prey encounter rate and body size, I develop a model for differentiating between large-game hunting specialization and encounter-based hunting. The model is first tested with ethnographically documented prey inventories for a sample of recent subsistence hunting populations, and is found to reveal distinct faunal signatures typical of each strategy. The model is then applied to the Clovis faunal record using faunal data from 33 Clovis sites. I find strong support for the hypothesis that Clovis hunter-gatherers used a large-game focused hunting strategy, although some use of small game is apparent. Furthermore, I employ data from modern hunter-gatherers to support the theoretical plausibility of specialized large mammal hunting across North America during the Late Pleistocene. Finally, I examine how subsistence choices affect the gendered division of labor in ethnographically documented populations. I examine the relationship between male and female subsistence efforts in terms of resource procurement, time allocation, and task differentiation. It is established that as male dietary contribution increases, female plant gathering focuses on high post-encounter return/low risk resources, the amount of time women spend procuring food decreases, and female participation in non-subsistence activities increases. An interpretation of Clovis labor organization is developed that emphasizes female labor in the production of material goods and the procurement of low risk resources.
Degree ProgramGraduate College