The evolution of "hyper-locality" on Rapa Nui (Easter Island)
The archaeology and prehistory of Rapa Nui (Easter Is.) reveals a paradox. Despite the island’s diminutive size and the lack of natural barriers preventing social interaction, prehistoric populations on the island show patterns of "hyper-locality." Evidence from ancient human genetics and multiple artifact classes show significant co-variation with space on an enigmatically small scale. Such spatial autocorrelation is likely explained by the structure of interactions in the context of Rapa Nui’s environment; however, it is unclear why such localized interaction would be so prevalent on such a small island. We explore conditions leading to the evolution of "hyper-locality" and consider the implications for Rapa Nui and beyond.
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The evolution of "hyper-locality" on Rapa Nui (Easter Island). Terry Hunt, Carl Lipo. Presented at The 80th Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, San Francisco, California. 2015 ( tDAR id: 396319)
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