Climatic Narratives across Eurasia: A Comparative Study of the 4.2k Event in Western and Eastern Asia
In the last two decades, climatic narratives have returned as a central issue in archaeological discourse. The field has been flooded with publications on paleoclimatic reconstructions and we believe it is time for a critical evaluation – both as means of seeking better science, and for building better archaeological narratives.
Climate history is composed by an overlapping meshwork of long-standing trends, punctuated events and short-term phases, with impacts ranging from the local to the global/hemispherical scale. As pointed out by several authors, the perception of change, understanding within specific cultural framework(s), and reactions to those changes, are crucial elements in the understanding of human-climate relationship. It is in this context that the so-called Holocene Rapid Climatic Changes (RCCs) – must be understood.
Among the various RCCs, the so-called 4.2k event represents a special case-study – being often associated with hypothetical widespread changes in the archaeological record. Together with a fresh look at the 4.2k climatic event, we analyze and discuss the ways in which those ‘climatic narratives’ have been built by comparing the Near and Far Eastern cases. Through it we show that mismatches of scale, archaeological and climatic, have profound impact on the way we reconstruct the past.
Cite this Record
Climatic Narratives across Eurasia: A Comparative Study of the 4.2k Event in Western and Eastern Asia. Lorenzo Castellano, Roderick Campbell, Yitzchak Jaffe. Presented at The 82nd Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, Washington, DC. 2018 ( tDAR id: 442571)
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min long: 28.301; min lat: -10.833 ; max long: -167.344; max lat: 75.931 ;
Abstract Id(s): 21326