Method For Theory: A Prelude to Human Ecosystems

The contents of Method for Theory: A Prelude to Human Ecosystems, Second Edition (2011), are presented here in two forms: 1) as a download-able pdf, click here; and 2) as navigable web pages, the contents of which are viewable by clicking the expandable 'Prelude' menu at left.

The web edition was created to provide an interface for interacting with students, colleagues, and others, over the thought experiment of creating an anthropologically-informed theory of human ecosystems. To start, we invite contributions to Section II.B., Constructing a Theory of Human Ecosystems, in the form of concise 1-2 paragraph descriptions of examples for any of the components of theory discussed, written into a Comment Box at the bottom of the relevant page. (Note that due to spam traffic, contributors will need to receive or request an account with permissions from the web editor--please introduce yourself to consumerwyndham A T [substitute @ for A T] as well if we don't know you already.) Periodically the site editors will select the most pertinent contributions from the Comments sections and move these into the main text pages. Over time we hope to richly illustrate the framework given here for understanding human ecosystems.

The first edition of this volume was produced and published as a Special Issue (Volume 5) of the Journal of Ecological Anthropology in 2001.

Method for Theory: A Prelude to Human Ecosystems


Inscription on a bridge at the Summer Palace of the former Emperors of China

There are three monkeys who cannot see their faces.
There is a bridge but no water.
There are windows but they do not open.
There is a tablet but no words.
There is a mirror but you cannot see your face.
There is a gate but no one passes through.

Truth in Advertising:
The following essay is a somewhat twisted mimicry of Pickett, Kolasa and Jones 1994.

You are here