CFEE JOINT SEMINAR: USE-WEAR AND TAPHONOMY

SÉMINAIRE / SEMINAR

Evolution: an international research seminar in Eastern Africa.
Paleobiodiversity, paleobiology, prehistory, paleoenvironments

(2015-2019)

21ème séance / 21st session: Use-wear and taphonomy: a study of Oldowan industries from the Shungura formation (Lower Omo Valley, Ethiopia)
par/by Aline Galland 

Jeudi 14 février 2019, 15h30-17h / Thursday, February 14, 2019, 3:30-5:00 pm

Lieu / Venue: Auditorium of the Authority for Research and Conservation of Cultural Heritage, Addis Ababa

The East African rift valley is a unique context for the study of Plio-Pleistocene hominins, the associated environment and their material cultures. In the Shungura formation, the resolution of the stratigraphic sequence and the important palaeontological and archaeological material allow a detailed recording of the earliest stages of human evolution including the production of stone tools. However the function of the tools made by these hominins is still unknown.

Here Aline Galland will present her PhD research focusing on both use-wear traces and post-depositional surface modifications on early Oldowan stone tools from the Shungura formation (Member F). Studies dealing with use-wear of Acheulean and Oldowan sites in eastern Africa (Keeley and Toth, 1981; Lemorini et al. 2014) have struggled with the presence of altered stone tools, which hinders the recognition of worked materials. These sites are older than 2 million years and have undergone post-depositional modifications under the effect of fluvial dynamic, tectonic activities and pedogenesis. That is why the evaluation of the integrity and position (primary or secondary contexts) of the sites, the homogeneity of lithic assemblages and the degree of tools’ preservation are the main prerequisites to understand the subsistence strategies of hominids groups and their relationship with the environment.

The speaker: Aline Galland is a PhD candidate in Prehistory at Bordeaux University (PACEA research unit).  In 2019, she received a CFEE fieldwork grant.


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