Book: Early Economy and Settlement in Northern Europe
Chapter: General Preface to the Series
This volume explores economy and settlement of the early post-glacial pioneers of Northern Europe. The articles present overviews and case studies from the Early and Middle Mesolithic of Northern Scandinavia in their wider northern European setting. Given the large geographical and climatic variation– ranging from the temperate over the subarctic to the arctic zones – and rapid and large-scale, early post-glacial changes in topography and ecology across the area, a regional approach is necessary. Special emphasis is placed on how the early pioneer hunter-fisher-gatherers “mapped onto the landscape” – organized their economy and settlement - in order to provide 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. Based on new analyses and field-work this book brings fresh perspectives and insights to all these important aspects of our early post-glacial past.