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Protein Capture and Cultural Development in the Amazon Basin

Daniel R. Gross
American Anthropologist
New Series, Vol. 77, No. 3 (Sep., 1975), pp. 526-549
Published by: Wiley on behalf of the American Anthropological Association
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/673394
Page Count: 24
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Since scans are not currently available to screen readers, please contact JSTOR User Support for access. We'll provide a PDF copy for your screen reader.
Protein Capture and Cultural Development in the Amazon Basin
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Abstract

This paper examines the proposition that availability of animal protein limits the size, density, and permanence of settlements of the aboriginal societies of the Amazon Basin. Previous discussions have focused mainly on agricultural potential. Evidence is presented from ethnography and ecology suggesting that fish and game are scarce, particularly away from major rivers. Nine relatively unacculturated societies have relatively low but probably adequate per capita intake of animal protein. The effects which this limitation may have on Amazonian culture are discussed.

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