© 2011

Trekking the Shore

Changing Coastlines and the Antiquity of Coastal Settlement

  • Nuno F. Bicho
  • Jonathan A. Haws
  • Loren G. Davis

Part of the Interdisciplinary Contributions to Archaeology book series (IDCA)

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-xxx
  2. North America and Eurasia

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 1-1
    2. Quentin Mackie, Daryl Fedje, Duncan McLaren, Nicole Smith, Iain McKechnie
      Pages 51-103
    3. Matthew R. Des Lauriers
      Pages 161-177
    4. Jonathan A. Haws, Caroline L. Funk, Michael M. Benedetti, Nuno F. Bicho, J. Michael Daniels, Thomas A. Minckley et al.
      Pages 203-246
    5. Kimberly Brown, Darren A. Fa, Geraldine Finlayson, Clive Finlayson
      Pages 247-272
  3. South America, Africa, and Oceania

About this book


Human settlement has often centered around coastal areas and waterways. Until recently, however, archaeologists believed that marine economies did not develop until the end of the Pleistocene, when the archaeological record begins to have evidence of marine life as part of the human diet. This has long been interpreted as a postglacial adaptation, due to the rise in sea level and subsequent decrease in terrestrial resources. Coastal resources, particularly mollusks, were viewed as fallback resources, which people resorted to only when terrestrial resources were scarce, included only as part of a more complex diet.

Recent research has significantly altered this understanding, known as the Broad Spectrum Revolution (BSR) model. The contributions to this volume revise the BSR model, with evidence that coastal resources were an important part of human economies and subsistence much earlier than previously thought, and even the main focus of diets for some Pleistocene and early Holocene hunter-gatherer societies.

With evidence from North and South America, Europe, Africa, Asia, and Australia, this volume comprehensively lends a new understanding to coastal settlement from the Middle Paleolithic to the Middle Holocene.


BSR Broad Spectrum Revolution model Holocene Archaeology Human Ecology Hunter-Gatherers Ice Age Landscape Archaeology Paleolithic Archaeology Shell Middens

Editors and affiliations

  • Nuno F. Bicho
    • 1
  • Jonathan A. Haws
    • 2
  • Loren G. Davis
    • 3
  1. 1.Fac. Ciências Humanas e Sociais (FCHS)Universidade do AlgarveFaroPortugal
  2. 2.Dept. AnthropologyUniversity of LouisvilleLouisvilleUSA
  3. 3.Oregon State UniversityCorvallisUSA

About the editors

Nuno Bicho received his Ph.D. in Anthropology from Southern Methodist University in 1992. He is currently an Associate Professor of Archaeology at the Universidade do Algarve, Portugal. He was Dean between 1998 and 2001 and 2005-2007. In addition, Bicho is the Director of the Center of Archaeology and Paleoecology of the University (NAP) and a researcher at the Archaeological Research Center at the University of Lisbon (UNIARQ). He specializes in Paleolithic technology and his research focuses on prehistoric costal hunter-gatherers of southern Iberia.

Jonathan Haws is an Associate Professor of Anthropology at the University of Louisville. He received his Ph.D. from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.  His research emphasizes a landscape approach to the Paleolithic occupation of central Portugal. Currently, he is directing a multidisciplinary project that includes a geoarchaeological survey of the Quaternary deposits of coastal Estremadura, Portugal, and the excavation of a multicomponent Upper Paleolithic cave site, Lapa do Picareiro.


Loren Davis is an Associate Professor of Anthropology at Oregon State University.  In addition, Davis is the Executive Director of the Keystone Archaeological Research Fund, and the Director of the Pacific Slope Archaeological Laboratory.  He received his Ph.D. in Anthropology from the University of Alberta.  His research focuses on the Pleistocene prehistory and geoarchaeology of western North America, with particular emphasis on the Pacific Northwest and the Baja California peninsula.

Bibliographic information

  • Book Title Trekking the Shore
  • Book Subtitle Changing Coastlines and the Antiquity of Coastal Settlement
  • Editors Nuno F. Bicho
    Jonathan A. Haws
    Loren G. Davis
  • Series Title Interdisciplinary Contributions to Archaeology
  • DOI
  • Copyright Information Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2011
  • Publisher Name Springer, New York, NY
  • eBook Packages Humanities, Social Sciences and Law Social Sciences (R0)
  • Hardcover ISBN 978-1-4419-8218-6
  • Softcover ISBN 978-1-4614-2886-2
  • eBook ISBN 978-1-4419-8219-3
  • Series ISSN 1568-2722
  • Edition Number 1
  • Number of Pages XXX, 498
  • Number of Illustrations 0 b/w illustrations, 0 illustrations in colour
  • Topics Archaeology
  • Buy this book on publisher's site


From the reviews:

“Trekking the Shore is a welcome addition to the literature on the archaeology of coastal adaptations and the challenges involved in discovering and interpreting early coastal sites given the vagaries of Quaternary sea level changes, shifting shorelines, and coastal erosion. … The book does an admirable job of that–virtually every chapter explicitly recognizing the importance of situating sites and assemblages within the dynamic landscapes and seascapes in which people lived.” (Jon M. Erlandson, Journal of Anthropological Research, Vol. 68, 2012)