Lunch @UCBerkeley with Kent Lightfoot – How Native Americans managed biodiversity
Lunch @UCBerkeley with Kent Lightfoot – How Native Americans managed biodiversityDOWNLOADABLE GUIDE TO SUNDAY EVENTS
Kent Lightfoot has been working for more than a decade with California Native American tribes to understand how their ancestors altered the land to enhance the biodiversity and quantity of useful plants and animals in their area. This primarily involved burning: using fire to maximize the potential of the plant and animal communities on which they depended for food, medicine, and raw materials for crafts.
In his talk, he will summarize an on-going collaborative research program that is examining the scale of these indigenous landscape management practices in Central California. The team includes scholars from the Amah Mutsun Tribal Band, California State Parks and the University of California campuses at Berkeley and Santa Cruz, who are investigating sites dating from 7000 BP to the present. The ultimate goal of the project is to examine how the physical evidence from the archaeological record can provide useful information for the contemporary management of public lands, such as in enhancing the richness and diversity of native species, improving the health of biological communities, and minimizing the risks of catastrophic fires. The research team is exploring how lessons from the past can directly contribute to the development of new protocols for the contemporary management of public spaces that are rooted in the deep history of tribal practices. See his website, http://anthropology.berkeley.edu/people/kent-lightfoot.
Registration is required.