Mousterian Lithic Technology: An Ecological Perspective, by Steven L. Kuhn, Princeton University Press, 1995
Department of Archaeology,
Data originating in old excavations are often regarded by archaeologists as being of poor quality or even unusable. Such assemblages lack the stratigraphic and temporal resolution of material acquired by modern excavations and are the product of research projects designed for the investigation of issues profoundly different from those concerning modem researchers. Steven Kuhn's Mousterian lithic Technology demonstrates that this kind of data (in this case coming from 40-plus-year-old excavations) can be successfully incorporated into current research agendas, as long as one uses them for addressing research questions appropriate to the resolution of the data, in this case human behavioural changes on an evolutionary scale. Kuhn bypasses the debate over the biological and/or cultural continuity vs. discontinuity between Neanderthals and modern humans. He argues convincingly that archaeological research will benefit from a disentaglement with the anthropological and the genetic discussions. He maintains that Mousterian material culture and behaviour deserve to be studied in their own right as successful adaptations that persisted over at least 200,000 years, rather than as those replaced by modern human behaviour.
How to Cite:
Papagianni, D., 1997. Mousterian Lithic Technology: An Ecological Perspective, by Steven L. Kuhn, Princeton University Press, 1995. Bulletin of the History of Archaeology, 7(1), pp.7–9. DOI: http://doi.org/10.5334/bha.07104
20 May 1997.