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date: 11 December 2017

Abstract and Keywords

This article explores what archaeologists call the “late Late Woodland/Late Prehistoric period,” the era from AD 1200 to 1600, in the Northern Great Lakes. It explores the dynamic choices Anishinaabeg communities made in that era, during the last 400 years before contact was made with Europeans. The Algonquian speakers in the Northern Great Lakes referred to themselves collectively as Anishinaabeg. Ojibway Historian William Warren offers the definition of this term as “Spontaneous People,” spontaneous meaning indigenous, natural, always human beings. Although there are differing interpretations of specific developments among the Anishinaabeg during this era in the Northern Great Lakes, it is widely agreed that a dramatic shift occurred after AD 1000–1100 that brought an end to a long-established socioeconomic system featuring high mobility, fluid social boundaries, and ready procurement of items across resource zones.

Keywords: ritual organization, Northern Great Lakes, Anishinaabeg communities, Algonquian speakers, socioeconomic system, social boundaries

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