Late-twentieth-century archaeological perspectives upon historical ecology in the Pacific islands emphasized anthropogenic impacts documented particularly in studies of vegetation change and deforestation, and the depletion or extinction of native faunas. More complex views of cultural-environmental relationships are now emerging. Biological invasions are seen as occurring more variably than in the transported landscapes model, simplistic narratives of cultural collapse are shown as only partly in agreement with relevant data, and models of behavioral ecology are argued as insufficient to explain long-term trajectories of ecological change. More influential roles are being proposed for climatic and demographic factors and cultural agency in ecological relations.
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Vol. 63 • No. 4