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Practicing Primitive: A Handbook of Aboriginal Skills Paperback – 1 Jun 2005

4.3 out of 5 stars 3 customer reviews

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Frequently Bought Together

  • Practicing Primitive: A Handbook of Aboriginal Skills
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  • Primitive Technology II: Ancestral Skills  - From the Society of Primitive Technology
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  • Primitive Technology: A Book of Earth Skills
Total price: £50.75
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Product details

  • Paperback: 240 pages
  • Publisher: Gibbs M. Smith Inc (1 Jun. 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 158685299X
  • ISBN-13: 978-1586852993
  • Product Dimensions: 21.6 x 1.4 x 27.9 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 819,261 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

Synopsis

Prehistorian Watts directs the Aboriginal Studies Program at the Schiele Museum of Natural History in North Carolina and has been thinking and writing about stone-age heritage for more than 20 years. Many of the articles collected here were previously published in the Bulletin of Primitive Technology. Abundantly illustrated with b&w photos and draw


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From the late Pleistocene up to the Roman/Christian/Iron Age invasion, this sea of trees grew from the Atlantic to the Pacific . . . from Scotland, across northern Europe, across Asia, and through Siberia to Beringia. Read the first page
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Customer Reviews

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I was looking for a practical guide to primative skills. This book is excellent with good illustrations and brief written guides. Better as a print edition I expect. The kindle just doesnt do it justice. It contains a lot of lists which are good if you like them. I would have hoped for a bit more content of substance, it feels a bit concise.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Must admit that this book was better to view on my laptop rather on my Kindle Fire, this was down to the scale of the photographs & diagrams. Much more information could be gleaned in a larger scale. The book was free at the time of purchase but on reflection I would've paid money to read it. Don't expect a glossy "coffee table book" type read. The book seems to be more of a semi academic primer for people attending one of the courses/projects run by the author. For U.K. usage some of the materials would be hard to obtain; though part of backwoods/primitive skills is learning to adapt to what one has at hand. Also certain projects could not be carried out to completion as the likes of blowpipes are illegal to hunt with in the U.K. The proof reading is slightly incomplete but don't let this detract it as a good little resource book for your library shelf. I've found that Kindle books like this are great for taking away as you can have a mini reference library in your pocket.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Again, excellent very much like the other two.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: HASH(0x8a695270) out of 5 stars 16 reviews
17 of 17 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x8abaf2c4) out of 5 stars Impressive 20 Aug. 2007
By Outside - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
Thorough, well written and heavily researched. Watts does a great job relaying primitive skills to the reader. Not just how to do them, but how recreations of various tasks were done, including the time and effort involved. Well worth every penny!!
11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x8abaf318) out of 5 stars Information and Inspiration 23 Dec. 2007
By S. Sides - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I'm giving this book as a gift so I haven't thoroughly read every page (though I did skim it heavily), but having had the privilege of learning under Steve, I've read much of the information in this book before when it was presented as student handouts.

As Steve says, "If it's not in context, it's just arts and crafts." Whether in a class or in this book, he sets out to not just teach us how to recreate objects, but to hopefully understand the people, places and reasons behind how and why they were made. While this book would not be a hand-holding, color photo, step-by-step manual for the complete novice, it is a compilation of well-organized information and inspiration for the person who's already used to working with his/her hands. For those who dabble in this field to those who are serious students, the greatest asset of this book is it's clear organization of information that's readily accessible.

The black and white photos aren't the highest quality but Steve's many illustrations clarify the details and are the highlight of the book. (Like a Holling C. Holling book -- There's the story and then there's the meat in the annotated illustrations. Minn of the Mississippi)

I've always been in awe of the way Steve is able to take the depth of information in his head and hands and weave it together to make it so accessible to his students. Through his own illustrations and a poet's sense of essential sparseness, Steve conveys incredible amounts of information, and being a perpetual student, himself, his works are always laced with humor and wonder.
8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x8aff8564) out of 5 stars Classic Steve Watts 20 Feb. 2008
By W. Eden - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This collection of articles is, as always well done. Steve has reached a level at the very core of "practicing primitives" that many of us wish we could achieve. If you haven't been a long time subscriber to the Society of Primitive Technology newsletters or bought the compilations from those, this will be fresh, new material for you, and well worth the price.
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x8c3e3e70) out of 5 stars dissapointed 28 Feb. 2013
By ZenViking - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I was really let down by this book. I read the kindle sample twice thinking it would be great. I loved the illustrations they were just like the ones in some of my favorite outdoor books. But as soon as I bought the book and moved on from the sample I was met by a bunch of dry random information. I really feel like this book was an archeology study rather than an attempt to convey outdoor skills using all natural materials. There was advice on the finer points of how to knap hand axes before I was really sure how knapping was done. I have seen youtube videos that have done a better expplination of how some of these skills were done. I made a mistake, I thought I was getting a beginners guide for people comming from an outdoorsman background and I got a group of articles for academics that are willing to get their hands dirty.
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x8affd8e8) out of 5 stars Kind of a disappointment 9 Mar. 2013
By R.G. - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I was really hoping that this book was a "how-to" book of primitive (first) skills, e.g. how to burn out a wooden bowl, how to make cordage, how to make long-term primitive shelters, etc. Instead, this is a re-print of previously published articles describing the experiences of people who have practiced these skills in an experimental/academic setting. This book will give you some hints and vague ideas of how a thing might be done, but don't expect good pictures and explanations of how to do something. Total brain tease!
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