A Place Against Time: Land and Environment in the Papua New Guinea Highlands

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Psychology Press, 1996 - Social Science - 438 pages
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A Place Against Time is an ethnographically focused environmental study of Montane, New Guinea, where people were among the world's first to cultivate crops some ten millennia ago, and where today an enduring agricultural condition continues. It arranges its account of climate, vegetation topography and geology according to their relationship with the soils of the region occupied by Wola speakers in the Southern Highlands Province of Papua New Guinea, in the Western Pacific. This book breaks new intellectual ground as an ethno-environmental investigation with a soils perspective, ethno-pedology being a little researched topic to date.
 

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Contents

INTRODUCTION
1
shifting cultivation
25
THE CLIMATE FACTOR
51
the spectre of famine
79
THE LAND RESOURCES FACTOR
103
the costs of erosion
139
THE BIOTIC FACTOR
167
demons to regrowth
201
THE SOIL
263
the implications of variability
297
fertility under cultivation
339
CONCLUSION
373
degradation or conservation?
393
APPENDIX
405
REFERENCES
411
INDEX
425

nutrient cycling and decomposition
229

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About the author (1996)

Paul Sillitoe is professor of Anthropology at the University of Durham, UK.

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