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Technological Systems, Population Dynamics and Historical Process in the MSA of Northern Africa

Boekbijdrage - Boekhoofdstuk Conferentiebijdrage

© 2016, Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht. This paper presents an alternative historical interpretation of regional patterns in MSA lithic industries of northern Africa, based on the observation that our current systematics often disguise real similarities and differences in the archaeological record. With regard to the early MSA, it is argued that the geographical distribution of the Sangoan is much wider than previously acknowledged and that it is present up to the Mediterranean coast. It may be the archaeological signature of an early expansion of anatomically modern humans. From the Last Interglacial onward, the distribution of the Nubian Complex records population influx in the eastern Sahara and in regions east of the Nile, including the Red Sea mountains and the Arabian peninsula. During the middle part of MIS 5, human populations in many parts of northern Africa may have been small or even absent. It is only in its final phase that this tendency is reversed again and that Late Nubian Complex sites frequently occur in the entire eastern range of the Saharan-Arabian belt. To the west, the Late Nubian Complex has a marked boundary and it is argued that the Aterian of the Central Sahara records a phenomenon of cultural assimilation between western and eastern populations. All these demographic processes are triggered by the aridification of northern Africa, ultimately leading to a phase of profound cultural and social change of which an Upper Palaeolithic mode of production is the outcome.
Pagina's: 147 - 159
Jaar van publicatie:2016
Authors from:Higher Education