De-centering the Fertile Crescent: Multiple Pathways to Food Production

Author(s): Dorian Fuller; Leilani Lucas

Year: 2015


Southwest Asia is one of the earliest and most documented centres of agricultural origins. With the expansion of archaeobotanical and zooarchaeological datasets within this region it is now more possible to unravel the evidence on a broader regional scale revealing a more complex picture with multiple centers and pathways of plant and animal domestication. Through a comparison of recent evidence this paper examines the multiple pathways towards domestication and the transition to agricultural economies in the Near East, suggesting four distinct subsistence trajectories. The different regional packages of both plant and also animal data are characterised and the development and diversification of these packages over time is discussed. With the addition of recent evidence from Jarmo an eastern route is established and contrasted with an Upper Euphrates trajectory that leads to Cyprus, the evidence from sites in the southern Levant, and the possible Anatolian path that feeds into the pulse-free Iranian zone represented by the evidence from Chakmak. Further, the differing rates of change within each of the crops is presented and situated within the regionally specific social contexts.

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Cite this Record

De-centering the Fertile Crescent: Multiple Pathways to Food Production. Leilani Lucas, Dorian Fuller. Presented at The 80th Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, San Francisco, California. 2015 ( tDAR id: 395659)


Spatial Coverage

min long: 25.225; min lat: 15.115 ; max long: 66.709; max lat: 45.583 ;