You are here

The Origins of Sedentism and Agriculture in Early China

Stanford University presents a public talk on food production in China.

April 23, 2012 9:00am to 6:00pm

Sedentari­zation and the appearance of agriculture are two of the most momentous evolutionary steps towards the emergence of complex societies in human history. These two developments, together with pottery and polished stone tools, have been generally regarded as part of Neolithization. However, recent studies from many regions in the world have shown that the beginnings of sedentariness and the emergence of food production did not always coincide. On the one hand, sedentism could be practiced in non-agricultural societies; on the other hand, the progress from low-level food production to agriculture may have taken many millennia, during which domesticates did not play an important role in subsistence strategies. In Chinese archaeological research, the origins of cereal and animal domestication have long been emphasized, but much less attention has been paid to sedentism. In this workshop we intend to investigate the evidence from interdisciplinary perspectives for understanding the initial transition from mobile hunter-gatherer lifeways to sedentism, the development and various formulations of sedentism, the emergence of plant/animal domestication, and the relationships between sedentarization and food production in China.

More details at:


October 29, 2020 - 4:00pm
The USC U.S.-China Institute and the USC Center on Transnational Law and Business look at what might be the aims of the next administration by focusing on technology, trade and investment ties.