About this Research Topic
Understanding how humans have developed local place-based adaptations to their surrounding environmental conditions or coped with changing climate over the course of millennia is critical to allowing humanity to adjust to our new warming world. Around the world, increasing numbers of high-resolution paleoclimate proxies may allow us to disentangle these relationships, however, interpretative frameworks are necessary to link these to the archaeological record. Multidisciplinary research at the junction of archaeology, environmental and climate studies can help us reconstruct not only subsistence patterns in ancient societies, but more critically, allow us a deeper understanding of the patterns that govern the social responses to the environmental and climatic changes in antiquity.
This Research Topic aims to bring together a series of articles that outline current methods for understanding interactions between the human sphere and the environment over the course of prehistory. Wider discussion and debate on the philosophical and methodological foundations in this field is necessary. Papers will include issues not limited to scientific robustness such as data quality, but also how to select the most suitable methods, and bridge the gap between archaeology and the earth sciences. Papers will focus on methods that reveal past environmental conditions and human responses to these. They will reflect on the flaws in the existing methods and propose potential improvements. Papers will identify key gaps in the current literature, particularly for the sites and periods which are not just of regional interests but also able to contribute a broad picture.
The Research Topic calls for papers that focus on using new methods or data to understand the interaction between humans and the environment in prehistory. We welcome submissions from all geographic areas and archaeological cultures. We are particularly interested but not limited to the following themes.
· Reviews that summarize the current state of the art, legacy data as well as future prospects for research.
· Methodological articles that present cutting-edge approaches in the study of past human/environment interaction. This could include advances in instrumentation, sample preparation/treatment, and data mining, but also new theoretical frameworks for understanding human responses to climate and environmental change in prehistory.
· Case studies that critical gaps in key regions, periods. On one hand, this would include discussions of how environmental and climate changes impacted prehistoric societies and on the other would include studies that outline the mechanism that groups of people employed to become resilient to these changes (such as technological innovation, long-distance communication, or human migration).
Keywords: human-land relationship, human activity, climate change, subsistence strategy, prehistoric age
Important Note: All contributions to this Research Topic must be within the scope of the section and journal to which they are submitted, as defined in their mission statements. Frontiers reserves the right to guide an out-of-scope manuscript to a more suitable section or journal at any stage of peer review.