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The Archaeology and Historical Ecology of Small Scale Economies$
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Victor D. Thompson and James C. Waggoner Jr.

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780813042428

Published to Florida Scholarship Online: May 2013

DOI: 10.5744/florida/9780813042428.001.0001

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To Become a Mountain Hunter

To Become a Mountain Hunter

Flexible Core Values and Subsistence Hunting among Reservation-Era Blackfeet

(p.141) 8 To Become a Mountain Hunter
The Archaeology and Historical Ecology of Small Scale Economies

María Nieves Zedeño

University Press of Florida

The decade of the 1880s marks the end of the Plains communal bison hunting. Taking Carole Crumley's “core values” in historical ecology as an organizing concept, this chapter examines the ecological, economic, social, political, and ritual conditions under which a Plains Indian society coped with sudden and devastating territorial circumscription, repression, and environmental change by modifying their relationship with the landscape within acceptable cultural parameters. Among the Montana Blackfeet, resilience was achieved largely through the development of a post-bison hunting complex that preserved ancient core values while allowing rapid shifts to intensive high-elevation hunting of ungulates, change in the size and composition of hunting groups and hunters’ social networks, and adjustment of traditional religious views and practices to new hunting conditions.

Keywords:   Blackfeet, elk, hunting, core values, Indian Reservation

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