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ERIC Number: ED550060
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2011
Pages: 354
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: N/A
ISBN: 978-1-2671-6809-2
Material Cultural Correlates of the Athapaskan Expansion: A Cross-Disciplinary Approach
Wilson, Joseph Andrew Park
ProQuest LLC, Ph.D. Dissertation, University of Florida
Contrary to stereotypes of proto-Athapaskan culture as simplistic and archaic, evidence points to a sophisticated web of late prehistoric Asian-Athapaskan interactions. A holistic assessment of Athapaskan migrations in the context of the transpacific Dene-Yeneseian phylum (the largest, fastest pedestrian language spread on earth) sees Athapaskan-Asian connections (in language, technology, DNA, social organization, etc.) as reflecting profound large-scale cultural-historical processes whose implications have yet to be grasped. Current understanding is that Athapaskans slowly migrated south in response to volcanic eruptions in southwest Yukon Territory after circa 200 and 800 CE. Yet problems remain, notably the archaeological invisibility of migrants on their long trek southward, and their possession of Asiatic strong complex bows which were not introduced to Northern Athapaskan territory until after these two eruptions. Linguistics, archaeology, biology, and data from ethnographic archery collections suggest Athapaskans carried sinew-backed bows to California and the Southwest. Both Apacheans and Northern Athapaskans uniquely possessed both "Arctic"- and "Plains"-style sinew-backed bows. Migration with retention (not diffusion through existing populations) is the best explanation. The Athapaskan expansion was faster than generally supposed, quite similar to the contemporaneous Punuk/Thule Neo-Eskimo expansion in the far north. Such a model helps to explain archaeological invisibility in the intervening space, as the impact made by the migrants was small. (Full text of this dissertation may be available via the University of Florida Libraries web site. Please check [The dissertation citations contained here are published with the permission of ProQuest LLC. Further reproduction is prohibited without permission. Copies of dissertations may be obtained by Telephone (800) 1-800-521-0600. Web page:]
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Publication Type: Dissertations/Theses - Doctoral Dissertations
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A