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Elusive wild foods in Southeast Asian subsistence: modern ethnography and archaeological phytoliths

Author(s): Alison Weisskopf ; Dorian Fuller

Year: 2017

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Summary

While grain crops, such as rice, are relatively easy to identify in the archaeobotanical record, evidence for early agriculture in the wet tropics can be elusive. In this region staple foods were not always grain-based and even today wild plants play an important role. So how do we identify ancient food pathways? Unlike temperate parts of the world, charred material rarely preserves, so this is where micro fossils such as phytoliths and starches come into play. I use phytoliths in combination with ethnobotany to evaluate plant remains from archaeological sites in Thailand and Vietnam and identify past arable systems.


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Elusive wild foods in Southeast Asian subsistence: modern ethnography and archaeological phytoliths. Alison Weisskopf, Dorian Fuller. Presented at The 81st Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, Vancouver, British Columbia. 2017 ( tDAR id: 431133)


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Spatial Coverage

min long: 66.885; min lat: -8.928 ; max long: 147.568; max lat: 54.059 ;

Record Identifiers

Abstract Id(s): 14365

Arizona State University The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation National Science Foundation National Endowment for the Humanities Society for American Archaeology Archaeological Institute of America