Resources, Use Potential and Basic Needs

A Methodological Framework for Landscape Archaeology
  • Tilman Lenssen-Erz
  • Jörg Linstädter
Part of the Studies in Human Ecology and Adaptation book series (STHE, volume 4)


Landscape archaeology as an analytical concept is not really new. Compilations of publications on this issue list several hundred references. Although they are far from being unanimous in their understanding of landscape archaeology, there is a common theme among almost all approaches, that is, the use of the term “landscape” as an analytical concept for a comprehensive understanding of the relation of prehistoric people to their environs, how they acted upon it, and, for a lesser number of papers, how they were cognizant of it. To clarify its full potential the term “landscape” is defined here and an epistemological frame developed for its implementation. The aim is to grasp the complex network of relations between resources, use of resources, and basic human needs in one comprehensive representation. This approach helps to work through all relevant issues in a checklist and facilitates comparisons between different case studies. Case studies from northern and southern Africa demonstrate the value of such an approach.


Geographic Information System Cultural Landscape Stone Tool Natural Asset Landscape Archaeology 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  • Tilman Lenssen-Erz
    • 1
  • Jörg Linstädter
  1. 1.African Research CenterUniversity of CologneCologneGermany

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