THE SUBVERSIVE SIGNIFICANCE OF TRANSPACIFIC CONTACT
Betty J. Meggers
When we suggested more than 40 years ago that pottery making was introduced to the coast of Ecuador from the southernmost island of Japan around 6000 years ago, the reaction among U.S. archeologists was mixed (Meggers, Evans, and Estrada 1965). A few thought the evidence was convincing, but the majority did not. The latter argued that the decorative techniques were simple and easy to invent; that suitable watercraft did not exist and if they did, that the trip would have required more than a year and no one could have survived; that anyone who survived either would have been killed or absorbed without making any impact; that vessels would have stopped in California rather than continued to Ecuador; and, more recently, that to suggest Native Americans did not invent pottery independently is an insult to their intelligence. Interestingly, some opponents actually admit that if the Valdivia (Ecuador) and Jomon (Japan) complexes were both encountered in the Americas—no matter how widely separated—their relationship would not be doubted.
Read full article
By Betty J. Meggers, NEARA Journal Vol. 39 No.2. Winter 2005