- New Paths into the Anthropocene: Applying Historical Ecologies to the Human Future
- Thinking Like An Archaeologist and Thinking Like an Engineer: A Utilitarian-Perspective Archaeology
- Expedience, Impermanence, and Unplanned Obsolescence: The Coming-About of Agricultural Features and Landscapes
- Just How Long Does ‘Long-Term’ Have to Be? Matters of Temporal Scale as Impediments to Interdisciplinary Understanding in Historical Ecology
- Archaeology, Historical Sciences, and Environmental Conservation
- Landscaping, Landscape Legacies, and Landesque Capital in Pre-Columbian Amazonia
- Integrating Geoarchaeology with Archaeology for Interdisciplinary Understanding of Societal–Environmental Relations
- Digging for Indigenous Knowledge: ‘Reverse Engineering’ and Stratigraphic Sequencing as a Potential Archaeological Contribution to Sustainability Assessments
- Linking the Past and Present of the Ancient Maya: Lowland Land Use, Population Distribution, and Density in the Late Classic Period
- Paleozoology Is Valuable to Conservation Biology
- Historic Molecules Connect the Past to Modern Conservation
- Community and Conservation: Documenting Millennial Scale Sustainable Resource Use at Lake Mývatn, Iceland
- Soils, Plants, and Texts: An Archaeologist’s Tool-Box
- Grappling with Interpreting and Testing People–Landscape Dynamics
- From Narratives to Algorithms: Extending Archaeological Explanation beyond Archaeology
- Growing the Ancient Maya Social-Ecological System from the Bottom Up
- Wells, Land, and History: Archaeology and Rural Development in Southern Africa
- Participatory Checking and the Temporality of Landscapes: Increasing Trust and Relevance in Qualitative Research
- Freelisting as a Tool for Assessing Cognitive Realities of Landscape Transformation: A Case Study from Amazonia
- A 1980 Attempt at Reviving Ancient Irrigation Practices in the Pacific: Rationale, Failure, and Success
- The Invisible Landscape: The Etruscan <i>Cuniculi</i> of Tuscania as a Determinant of Present-Day Landscape and a Valuable Tool for Sustainable Water Management
- The Rehabilitation of Pre-Hispanic Agricultural Infrastructure to Support Rural Development in the Peruvian Andes: The Work of the Cusichaca Trust
- Applied Archaeology in the Americas: Evaluating Archaeological Solutions to the Impacts of Global Environmental Change
- Indigenous Technologies, Archaeology, and Rural Development in the Andes: Three Decades of Trials in Bolivia, Ecuador, and Peru
- Quality of Life and Prosperity in Ancient Households and Communities
- Applied Perspectives on Pre-Columbian Maya Water Management Systems: What are the Insights for Water Security?
- Beyond Rhetoric: Towards a Framework for an Applied Historical Ecology of Urban Planning
- Culture, Power, History: Implications for Understanding Global Environmental Change
- Energy Gain and the Evolution of Organization
- Conclusion: Anthropocentric Historical Ecology, Applied Archaeology, and the Future of a Usable Past
Abstract and Keywords
Environmental conservation has long been orientated towards reconstructing or conserving ‘naturalness’. The historical sciences in combination with new ecological thinking have taught us that landscapes are constantly in flux. We now know that many landscapes that previously were regarded as natural in fact have been shaped and reshaped by people over millennia, and that human disturbance of different kinds may enhance landscape heterogeneity and biodiversity. This chapter presents cases from different parts of Africa that demonstrate how archaeology, palaeoecology, and historical analysis have contributed to reform the traditional outlook of environmental conservation and revise misconstrued landscape histories. It shows that historical studies can offer insights that contribute a better understanding of species conservation, ecosystem function, prediction of ecosystem behaviour, and sound management of cultural landscapes. The long-term historical continuities in the landscape raise awareness of the importance of traditional practices and their benefits for environmental conservation.
Anneli Ekblom is a Senior Lecturer in the Department of Archaeology and Ancient History at Uppsala University. She has a research background in African and comparative archaeology, historical ecology, paleoecology, and environmental history. Since 2005 she has been involved in projects that specifically explore the long term ecology of conservation areas such as Kruger National Park (South Africa) and Limpopo National Park (Mozambique) with the aim of addressing current issues of environmental management. She also has a long experience from Swedish contract archaeology, palaeoecological research, and the field of environmental history. She is the current Director of the Centre for Environment and Development Studies (CEMUS), a student–faculty run centre focusing on sustainability issues.
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