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Deadly Landscapes

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Copyright: 2001
Trim: 7 x 10
Pages: 392 pp.
Illustrations: 100 figures, 18 tables


Deadly Landscapes

Case Studies in Prehistoric Southwestern Warfare

Edited by Glen Rice and Steven A. LeBlanc

Anthropology / Archaeology

Deadly Landscapes presents a series of cases that advance the rigorous examination of war in the archaeological record. The studies encompass examples from the Hohokam, Sinagua, Mogollon, and Anasazi regions, plus a pan-regional study of iconography covering the Colorado Plateau and the Rio Grande Valley. All of the cases focus on the narrow time frame from AD 1200 to the early-1400s, during which evidence for warfare is most pervasive.

Contributors to this volume present varying definitions of warfare and use differing types of data to test for the presence of warfare. These detailed case studies give clear demonstration of a pattern of significant warfare in the late prehistoric period that will alter our understanding of ancient Southwestern cultures.

Glen Rice is head of the Office of Cultural Resource Management at Arizona State University.

Steven LeBlanc is director of collections for the Peabody Museum of Archaeology and Ethnology and is the author of Prehistoric Warfare in the American Southwest (University of Utah Press, 1999).


Helen K. Crotty - Sandia Park, New Mexico
William H. Doelle - Desert Archaeology, Tucson, Arizona
Dennis C. Gosser - Arizona State University-Tempe
Lawrence H. Keeley - University of Illinois
Kristin A. Kuckelman - Crow Canyon Archaeological Center, Cortez, Colorado
Steven A. LeBlanc - Peabody Museum of Archaeology and Ethnology, Harvard University
Ricky R. Lightfoot - Crow Canyon Archaeological Center, Cortez, Colorado
Theodore J. Oliver - Mesa, Arizona
J. Jefferson Reid - University of Arizona
Glen E. Rice - Arizona State University
Gerald Robertson Jr. - Verde Valley, Arizona
Arleyn W. Simon - Arizona State University-Tempe
H. David Tuggle - University of Arizona
Henry D. Wallace - Desert Archaeology, Tucson, Arizona
David R. Wilcox - Museum of Northern Arizona, Flagstaff, Arizona
J. Scott Wood - Tonto National Forest, Phoenix, Arizona

Table of Contents:

1. Southwestern Warfare: The Value of Case Studies ~ Steven A. LeBlanc and Glen E. Rice
2. Warfare and Aggregation in the El Morro Valley, New Mexico ~ Steven A. LeBlanc
3. A Case of Warfare in the Mesa Verde Region ~ Ricky R. Lightfoot and Kristin A. Kuckelman
4. Shields, Shield Bearers, and Warfare Imagery in Anasazi Art, 1200–1500 ~ Helen K. Crotty
5. Conflict and Defense in the Grasshopper Region of East-Central Arizona ~ H. David Tuggle and J. Jefferson Reid
6. Antecedents to Perry Mesa: Early Pueblo III Defensive Refuge Systems in West-Central Arizona ~ David R. Wilcox, Gerald Robertson Jr., and J. Scott Wood
7. Organized for War: The Perry Mesa Settlement System and Its Central Neighbors ~ David R. Wilcox, Gerald Robertson Jr., and J. Scott Wood
8. Warfare in Tonto Basin ~ Theodore J. Oliver
9. Conflict and Exchange among the Salado of Tonto Basin: Warfare Motivation or Alleviation? ~ Arleyn W. Simon and Dennis C. Gosser
10. Classic Period Warfare in Southern Arizona ~ Henry D. Wallace and William H. Doelle
11. Warfare and the Missing in the Salt and Gila Basins of Central Arizona ~ Glen E. Rice
12. Giving War a Chance ~ Lawrence H. Keeley


Praise and Reviews:

"A major contribution to our understanding of social relations, friendly and unfriendly, in the prehistoric Southwest."
—Steve Plog, University of Virginia

"This volume can contribute usefully to the reviving interest in prehistoric warfare, a long neglected topic. It is valuable to have such concrete examples of the evidence and the conclusions that can be drawn therefrom."
—Richard Woodbury, emeritus professor, University of Massachusetts

"The detailed case studies provided in Deadly Landscapes offer a welcome departure from sensationalism and the cannibalism vs. witchcraft conundrum, and they collectively move the discussion of prehispanic social conflict in a more productive direction."
—American Antiquity

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