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Ref ID: 28429
Ref Type: Journal Article
Authors: Guedes, Jade d'Alpoim
Title: Millets, rice, social complexity, and the spread of agriculture to the Chengdu Plain and Southwest China
Date: 2011
Source: Rice
DOI: 10.1007/s12284-011-9071-1
Abstract: Southwest China played a pivotal role in the spread of agriculture across East and Southeast Asia. Both rice and millet were important in the spread of populations and the expansion of agriculture into this region. Recent finds in the mountainous peripheries of Sichuan Province show that the earliest inhabitants of this region practiced a combination of broomcorn and foxtail millet agriculture (ca 4000–2500 BC). These crops are adapted to high altitude and arid environments, which facilitated their movement across this region and eventually into the Tibetan Plateau. At around 2700 BC, a combined system of rice and foxtail millet agriculture appears suddenly in sites of the Baodun culture on the Chengdu Plain. The use of this double cropping system provided advantages to the inhabitants of this region in both risk reduction and yield. I argue that this had important consequences for spurring population growth, facilitating expansion into new territories and the development of social complexity.
Date Created: 2/1/2012
Volume: 4
Page Start: 104
Page End: 113