Seth J. Quintus

Seth J. Quintus
University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa | UH Manoa · Department of Anthropology

Doctor of Philosophy

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29
Publications
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262
Citations

Publications

Publications (29)
Article
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The agricultural systems of the Hawaiian archipelago were some of the most intensive in the Pacific and this scale of intensity is well illustrated by the large agricultural landscapes of leeward Hawai‘i Island. Previous research in the area has centred on understanding the relationship between agriculture, political process, and large-scale enviro...
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Stone and earthen architecture is nearly ubiquitous in the archaeological record of Pacific islands. The construction of this architecture is tied to a range of socio-political processes, and the temporal patterning of these features is useful for understanding the rate at which populations grew, innovation occurred, and social inequality emerged....
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Successful settlement on Polynesian islands required the alteration of environments, and such alteration produced extensive cultural landscapes. While some of the characteristics of these landscapes are well-established, what drives the spatial and temporal structure of these settlements is not clear across the entire region. Here, we present data...
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Exchange plays a number of roles within societies, including the provisioning of necessary and prestige resources. The elucidation of these different roles requires documenting how different kinds of material were used and how these resources became distributed. These studies are particularly prominent in Polynesia, especially the Sāmoan archipelag...
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en Small islands are important model systems for examining the role of people in shaping novel environments and modifying resources through time. Here we report on the vertebrate faunal assemblages recovered from two sites on Ofu and Olosega islands (American Samoa), which were occupied only a few centuries after the initial settlement of the islan...
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en Marine resources are integral to the subsistence of coastal populations in Oceania and have been since the islands were first settled. While items of fishing gear, most notably fishhooks, are found throughout the Pacific, they are not as common as one might think. Fishhooks are in fact noticeably uncommon in the Central Pacific, for example. Con...
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Most pre-European polities in Polynesia were constituted by multiple interacting communities, some of which were centers while others were hinterlands. The relationship between these communities was mediated by the nature of power in these societies and the economic and ideological foundations of that power. Different relationships leave different...
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Agroforestry systems have long played a central role in Polynesian societies, contributing to food production, building and craft production, and ritual activities. Until recently, however, archaeological studies of these important systems were limited. Recent methodological improvements and a growing number of macro- and micro-botanical studies ha...
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The 9th-15th century Angkorian state was Southeast Asia's greatest premodern empire and Angkor Wat in the World Heritage site of Angkor is one of its largest religious monuments. Here we use excavation and chronometric data from three field seasons at Angkor Wat to understand the decline and reorganization of the Angkorian Empire, which was a more...
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Previous research has demonstrated that the nature of power strategies correlates with the nature of ritual action, and nowhere is political action more important than in Polynesia. Polynesian political systems have served as important comparative examples for the investigation of complex societies, although the nature of some early political syste...
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Hawaiian dryland agriculture is believed to have played an important role in the rise of archaic states and consolidation of political power. At the same time, the sensitivity of agricultural production in dryland field systems to temporal variability in climate would have had implications for economic and political relationships, both competitive...
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The practice of cultivation has an immediate and long-lasting effect on the environment. Often, we tend to think of these effects in terms of immediate production outcomes, notably increased plant production. However, such modification of the environment has the potential to directly influence of rate and trajectory of agricultural development more...
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Strategies and techniques of food production change throughout the world reflecting the influence of a range of social and ecological factors. Often excluded in discussions of changing cultivation strategies, however, are the structuring effects of history. Within this paper, an examination of how history structured changing food production over th...
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The archaeology of Sāmoa has been structured around the investigation of settlement patterns and systems since the 1960s, and such investigations have been variously used to explore questions of temporal change relating to, among other things, political structure and subsistence. This same intellectual structure is applied here to the evaluation of...
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The availability of lidar datasets has led to several advances in archaeology, notably in the process of site prospection. Some remote sensing practitioners have aimed to create automated feature extraction (AFE) techniques that increase the efficiency and efficacy of identification and analysis. While these advances have been successful, many arch...
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Most pre-European Polynesian societies were supported by intensive and elaborate cultivation systems. These systems were at the core of human adaptation and political maneuvering, being intimately tied to both the physical and cultural environment. However, our understanding of the development of and variation within Polynesian cultivation systems...
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Case studies offer an opportunity to examine and highlight relationships among variables in a way that cannot be done through broad comparison. Ofu Island has served as one such case study for understanding human–environment relationships. Here, we use three decades of archaeological investigations – past work of others as well as our own recent re...
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Radiocarbon dating of marine samples requires a local marine reservoir correction, or ΔR value, for accurate age calibrations. For the Samoan Archipelago in the central Pacific, ΔR values have been proposed previously, but, unlike some Polynesian archipelagoes, ΔR values seem not to vary spatially and temporally. Here, we demonstrate such variabili...
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This study examines the intersections of spatial logic and archaeology in the Sāmoan Archipelago of Polynesia. These islands provide model systems for understanding social space given their small size and bounded nature. We argue that spatial logic, defined as group conceptualization of space or shared orientations, contributes to the patterning of...
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The timing and unprecedented speed of the Lapita migration from the western edge of Oceania to western Polynesia in the Central Pacific have long been of interest to archaeologists. The eastern-most extent of that great human migration was the Samoan Archipelago in West Polynesia, although critical questions have remained about the timing and proce...
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Much atteniion has been paid to the role of increased food production in the development of social complexity. Howeve, increased food production is only one kind of agricultural proces, and some changes in agronomcc practices were geared toward stabilizing production or counteracting periodcc shortfalls. The intersection between these latter strate...
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The identification and analysis of 1583 bones from colonisation (~2700 cal BP) to late period (post-800 cal BP) cultural layers from archaeological site AS-13–41 on Ofu Island, American Samoa are reported. The assemblage is dominated by fish (~91 per cent; NISP = 1435, MNI = 162) with bones of human, Green Sea Turtle, sea birds (shearwaters and pet...
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This study summarizes the impacts of geomorphological processes on human settlement strategies on the island of Ofu in the Samoan Archipelago from island colonization to permanent settlement in the interior uplands (c. 2700-900 b.p.). Previous archaeological research on Ofu has documented a dynamic coastal landscape at one location, To’aga, on the...
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Samoan terrestrial production is vastly under researched archaeologically and few projects explicitly explore such a topic. This paper reports a food production system found in the interior of Olosega Island, one of three islands within the Manu'a group of American Samoa. This production system was part of a divided landscape, in which the resident...
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The spatial lajout of a late prehistoric settlement is examined using comparative analysis, ethnohistorical documents and GIS analysis. The spatial organisation of the settlement is similar to the spatial la\ out of ethnographically documented Samoan villages, which has been posited to mirror social and political interaction. Spatial concepts devel...

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Projects (4)
Project
Our goal is to understand how human movements and land uses have unintentionally altered terrestrial biogeochemistry by introducing non-native earthworms.