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Experimentation preceding innovation in a MIS5 Pre-Still Bay layer from Diepkloof Rock Shelter (South Africa): emerging technologies and symbolsuse asterix (*) to get italics
Guillaume Porraz, John E. Parkington, Patrick Schmidt, GĂ©rald Bereiziat, Jean-Philip Brugal, Laure Dayet, Marina Igreja, Christopher E. Miller, Viola C. Schmid, Chantal Tribolo, Aurore Val, Christine Verna, Pierre-Jean TexierPlease use the format "First name initials family name" as in "Marie S. Curie, Niels H. D. Bohr, Albert Einstein, John R. R. Tolkien, Donna T. Strickland"
<p>In South Africa, key technologies and symbolic behaviors develop as early as the later Middle Stone Age in MIS5. These innovations arise independently in various places, contexts and forms, until their full expression during the Still Bay and the Howiesons Poort. We elaborate here on the Middle Stone Age sequence of Diepkloof Rock Shelter (South Africa) and focus on the Stratigraphic Unit Lynn, which immediately precedes the Still Bay at the site. The pre-Still Bay Lynn documents the transport of rocks over long distance (&gt;20 km), the heat treatment of silcrete, the coexistence of seven lithic reduction strategies (including the production of bladelets and the manufacture of unifacial and bifacial points), the use of adhesives and the processing of ochre. Beside this set of novelties, the layer yields one of the oldest abstract engravings so far discovered in Africa, taking the form of cross-hatched markings in the cortical surface of an ungulate long bone shaft. At Diepkloof, these new practices appear in a context that demonstrates a shift in rock procurement and a diversification in lithic reduction strategies, suggesting these behavioral practices acted as a cultural answer to cope with new environmental and/or socio-economical circumstances. We argue that the innovations later found during the Still Bay and the Howiesons Poort were then already in the making during the MIS5 pre-Still Bay, though not all the benefits were yet taken advantage of by the populations.</p>
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Late Pleistocene, Middle Stone Age, behavioral evolution, early symbols, bone engraving, cultural exaptation, heat treatment
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Africa, Lithic technology, Middle Palaeolithic, Symbolic behaviours
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2020-08-04 09:13:27
Anne Delagnes