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Revising ideas about environmental determinism: human-environment relations in the Pacific Islands

Nunn, Patrick D. (2003) Revising ideas about environmental determinism: human-environment relations in the Pacific Islands. Asia Pacific Viewpoint, 44 (1). pp. 63-72. ISSN 1360-7456

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Abstract

Rapid cooling and sea–level fall around AD 1300, perhaps accompanied by increased storminess, had major impacts on Pacific Island environments including water–table fall, reef–surface death, increased lagoonal turbidity, and the conversion of seawater embayments to brackish–water wetlands. These environmental changes had severe and lasting impacts on Pacific Island societies, largely associated with a massive (perhaps 80 per cent) reduction in the food resource base on some islands. Conflict ensued, coastal villages were abandoned on high islands in favour of fortified inland sites, settlements on large atoll islands were dispersed. It is clear that environmental change a the major cause of last–millennium cultural transformation in the Pacific Islands, a conclusion which is likely to apply elsewhere.

Item Type: Journal Article
Subjects: G Geography. Anthropology. Recreation > GF Human ecology. Anthropogeography
Divisions: Faculty of Science, Technology and Environment (FSTE) > School of Geography, Earth Science and Environment
Depositing User: Ms Mereoni Camailakeba
Date Deposited: 23 Apr 2003 21:11
Last Modified: 16 Jul 2012 17:51
URI: http://repository.usp.ac.fj/id/eprint/2797
UNSPECIFIED

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