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Argonauts of the stone age

early maritime activity from the first migrations from Africa to the end of the Neolithic

di Pydyn Andrzej

256 pagine ISBN: 978178491143
Anno di pubblicazione: 2016

This is an important book. Too often in the past archaeologists have ignored or underestimated sea travel in early prehistory but the evidence has been growing and now it is presented to us in full in this thought provoking study. No longer can those interested in the human achievement neglect to take into account the astonishing achievements of our palaeolithic, mesolithic and neolithic ancestors. This book gives a full account of stone age seafaring presenting the archaeological evidence in the context of the changing world environment and uses ethnographic sources to broaden the readers understanding of the worlds earliest sea craft. It is essential reading for all concerned to understand the human condition. – Professor Sir Barry Cunliffe, Oxford The book is a comprehensive study of early navigation and its place in the development of human culture from the earliest times to the late Stone Age. This subject is very timely in light of increasing archaeological and palaeoanthropological evidence that the maritime environment had been mastered in prehistory. As the author rightly points out at the beginning of his book, the maritime environment can no longer be marginalized when portraying both hunter-gatherer and early agrarian prehistoric communities. The book is a valuable and inspiring work on a subject which had hitherto not enjoyed such in-depth treatment. It greatly enhances our perception of the beginnings of human culture and enriches it with comprehensive, convincing arguments that the maritime environment had been mastered by early humans. I congratulate the author on the effect he has achieved and on unearthing so many chronologically, geographically and thematically diverse sources. – Prof. Pawe? Valde-Nowak, Jagiellonian University, Krakow. The title of the book intrigues the reader and promises a fascinating read about issues approached from an innovatively broad perspective. Both the global territorial scope and the chronological range covering almost two million years of human cultural development are worthy of note. What we have here is an aspect of human activity which is often neglected and marginalized in scientific research, which is that directly related to the sea. The fact that up to 90% of Pleistocene coasts, which were after all heavily populated in the Stone Age, have been flooded in modern times is not conducive to large-scale research, as underlined by the author in the Introduction. The beginnings of human activity on the high seas are the subject of research in numerous scientific disciplines, all of which are discussed here. In writing this book the author has drawn on an exceptionally wide range of literature, mostly in English, owing to which the author's own views, as well as those of other researchers whom he cites, are credible and convincing.



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