California’s Northern Channel Islands, sometimes called the American Galápagos, are often celebrated as a trip back in time where tourists can view glimpses of California prior to modern development. The islands are sometimes portrayed as frozen moments in history where ecosystems developed in virtual isolation for tens of thousands of years. For at least 13,000 years, however, the Chumash and their ancestors occupied the islands, leaving behind one of the longest and best preserved archaeological records in the Americas. From ephemeral hunting and gathering camps to densely populated coastal villages and Euro-American and Chinese historical sites, archaeologists have studied Channel Island environments and material culture records for over 100 years, piecing together a fascinating story of initial settlement by mobile hunter-gatherers to the development of one of the world’s most complex hunter-gatherer societies. For more than 10,000 years, the Chumash survived dramatic changes to their land- and seascapes, climatic fluctuations, and ever-evolving social and cultural developments. Today, the lessons of Channel Islands history can act as a guide for building sustainable strategies. The resilience of the Chumash and Channel Island ecosystems provides a compelling story of hope for a world increasingly threatened by climate change, rising seas, declining biodiversity, and geopolitical instability.
This event will be held on Zoom. Proceeds from our Living Room Lecture series help provide support for the care of Center collections and programs for all ages.
Ticket purchases of $45 and over will receive a signed hardcover edition of Islands through Time: A Human and Ecological History of the Northern Channel Islands by Todd J. Braje. Books will be mailed to the billing address unless otherwise noted on registration form. Books are not guaranteed to arrive before the lecture.
Date: Thursday, September 1, 2022
Time: 6:30 PM
Location: Online on Zoom
Cost: Pay what you wish
Registration closes at 4 PM on Thursday, September 1.
About the Presenter
Todd J. Braje is Professor and Department Chair of Anthropology at San Diego State University, where he conducts research on the archaeology and historical ecology of maritime hunter-gatherer-fishers and maritime migrations. He has published over 100 academic articles, and his latest book is available from Roman & Littlefield and titled Islands through Time: A Human and Ecological History of the Northern Channel Islands.