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The Early Settlement of Northern Europe

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This three-volume project presents current knowledge and updated research on the first phases of human settlement in Northern Europe. The temporal focus is on the first millennia of the Holocene and the area of special interest is the Scandinavian countries, the Baltic, and the northern parts of Poland, Germany and Great Britain. The area was among the latest colonised by humans after the Ice Age, thus the archaeological record gives an extraordinary detailed insight into the colonisation and socialisation of post-glacial Europe. During the last decades, the archaeology of this region has made major progress in methodological developments, collecting new data sets and in interdisciplinary research. The three volumes of The early Settlement of Northern Europe will provide these new results, organised according to three major themes. The books are sold as a set at a discount and individual volumes are also available separately.

Volume One
Ecology of Early Settlement in Northern Europe: Conditions for Subsistence and Survival
Editors: Per Persson, Felix Riede, Birgitte Skar, Heidi M. Breivik and Leif Jonsson
The first volume presents new archaeological and ecological data and analyses on the relation between human subsistence and survival, and the natural history of North-Western Europe throughout the period 10000 - 6000 BC. The volume contains contributions from ecological oriented archaeologists and from the natural sciences, throwing new light on the physical and biotic/ecological conditions of relevance to the earliest settlement. Main themes are human subsistence, subsistence technology, ecology and food availability pertaining to the first humans, and demographic patterns among humans linked to the accessibility of different landscapes.

Volume Two
Technology of Early Settlement in Northern Europe: Transmission of Knowledge and Culture
Editors: Kjel Knutsson, Helena Knutsson, Jan Apel and Håkon Glørstad
This volume explores technology and communication among the early settlements of Northern Europe. The articles discuss case-studies and present overviews from the Early and Middle Mesolithic of Northern Europe. Special emphasis is placed on the spatial and temporal transmission of knowledge and culture. This subject addresses themes such as the transmission of specialised knowledge, the generative transmission of knowledge, the understanding of technology as somatic or incorporated culture in human society and the role of pedagogies and teaching in cultural sustainment and transformation. Other papers discuss the relation between demography and technological developments, as well as the natural and cultural context for the transmission of culture. The understanding of the transmission of technology is, again, closely interrelated to the nature and efficiency of social networks of contact and their social and physical framework.

Volume Three
Early Economy and Settlement in Northern Europe: Pioneering, Resource Use, Coping with Change
Editor: Hans Peter Blankholm
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.

Review of the Series
The volumes in this series represent a significant contribution towards the study of the early Stone Age archaeology in Northern Europe, and make for a highly interesting read. The editorial team have done an excellent job of creating volumes that work both independently and as a whole – which is no mean feat. For their part, the contributors have provided a series of generally excellent research papers that approach the core themes from a range of perspectives.
Norwegian Archaeological Review

Books for The Early Settlement of Northern Europe