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New Perspectives on Human-Environment Interactions in Ancient China

JJ Wang.jpg

SAA Conference Panel 2022

April 02, 1:30 - 4:30 pm, 87th Society of American Archaeology Annual Meeting in Chicago



China’s deep history and interconnected physical geography provide unique opportunities for insights into humans and societies in the past and future. Recent archaeological and paleoenvironmental research has provided important and abundant data linking environmental and cultural changes in ancient China. Nevertheless, the relationships between humans and the environment are complex and multidimensional, rather than a simple correlation and causation depiction. This still remains as much a theoretical task as a methodological one. By bringing together the recent work on a wide range of topics and approaches, including climate change, subsistence activity, landscape, and various forms of technological practices, this session expects to provide a more nuanced understanding of human-environment dynamics in ancient China.

Yahui He, a current member of the Archaeological Science Lab, and Dr. Jiajing Wang, an alumna, organized a panel session at the 87th Society of American Archaeology Annual Meeting on the topic of human and environment interactions in Ancient China. Members of the ASL Dr. Matthew Chastain, Yahui He, Jingbo Li, Yuyang Wang, alumni Dr. Jiajing Wang, and Ran Chen presented in this session. Dr. Kacey Grauer, alumni Dr. Andrew Womack, and Dr. Maureece Levin presented in other sessions.



Yahui He: Plant food exploitation in the borderland region of north China during the early Neolithic period

Katherine Brunson: Deer and Humans in Early North China: From Symbiosis to Scarcity

Jiajing Wang: Human-animal relationship during the Longshan culture: A case study of Kangjia 

Matthew Chastain: Geological influence on the development of ancient China’s bronze industries

Yuyang Wang: Understanding Organic Material Processing in the Yiluo Region with Methods of Experimental Archaeology

Xin Su: Underwater Exploration: A New Understanding of the Environment and Landscape of the Panlongcheng site (1500-1300 BC) in Hubei Province, China

Ran Chen: Exploring the Use of Microliths in the Early Chinese Neolithic: A Functional Study Based on Use-wear Analysis and Residue Analysis

Jingbo Li: Foodways in the Early Zhou Capital: Residue and Isotope Study of the Zhouyuan Site (~3,000 yr BP) in Shaanxi, China

Rong Fan: Settling Down in a Rich Environment: reconstructing energy expenditure from the human skeletal remains at the Jiahu and Beiqian sites

Yufeng Sun: Plant stable isotope analysis reveals the water management strategies of wheat and barley in early China

Yung-ti Li: Colony or Hegemonic Center? Repositioning Panlongcheng to Its Regional Context

Xinyi Liu: Effects of Novel Environments on Domesticated Species: A case of the Hexi Corridor


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