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Book: Early Economy and Settlement in Northern Europe

Chapter: The Early Economy and Settlement in Northern Europe—Pioneering, Resource Use, Coping with Change: New Investigations

DOI: 10.1558/equinox.30854


This is the third volume of The Early Settlement of Northern Europe trilogy from the Pioneer Network within the Norwegian Research Council sponsored “Forskning i Fellesskap (Joint Research – Targeting Archaeology at the University Museums)” project – a joint venture among the five university museums in Norway aimed at activating their collections for new cutting edge research.

The volume explores economy, settlement, and society of the early Post-Glacial (c. 9500-7000 uncal. BP/8800-6000 cal. BC) pioneers of northern Europe. The articles will present overviews and case studies of the Early and Middle Mesolithic of northern Scandinavia in their wider northern European setting.

Given the vast geographical and climatic variation– ranging from the temperate over the sub-arctic to the arctic zones – and rapid and large-scale, early Post-Glacial changes in topography and ecology across the area, a regional approach is desirable in order to avoid cultural and behavioural “homogenization” of what essentially may be seen as a mosaic of great dynamic variation in scale, time and space.

Special emphasis will be placed on how the early pioneer hunter-fisher-gatherers “mapped onto the landscape” – organized their economy and settlement - in turn providing for a broader and deeper understanding of the “big issues”, such as, why, from where, and how they came into different parts of northern Scandinavia and in particular how the maritime component of the economy and settlement emerged. Another issue of particular, contemporary human interest is addressed through studies of how the early pioneers coped with rapid and large-scale climatic changes and their impact on living conditions. In addition new methodologies of particular relevance are presented.

Chapter Contributors

  • Hans Peter Blankholm ( - hpblankholm) 'University of Tromsø - The Arctic University of Norway.'