Renewed investigations into the Middle Stone Age of northern Malawi

Thompson, Jessica C., Mackay, Alex, Wright, David K., Welling, Menno, Greaves, Amanda, Gomani-Chindebvu, Elizabeth and Simengwa, Davie (2012) Renewed investigations into the Middle Stone Age of northern Malawi. Quaternary International, 270 129-139. doi:10.1016/j.quaint.2011.12.014

Author Thompson, Jessica C.
Mackay, Alex
Wright, David K.
Welling, Menno
Greaves, Amanda
Gomani-Chindebvu, Elizabeth
Simengwa, Davie
Title Renewed investigations into the Middle Stone Age of northern Malawi
Journal name Quaternary International   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 1040-6182
Publication date 2012-08-23
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1016/j.quaint.2011.12.014
Volume 270
Start page 129
End page 139
Total pages 11
Editor Gerrit L. Dusseldorp
Geeske H. J. Langejans
Place of publication Oxford, United Kingdom
Publisher Pergamon
Collection year 2013
Language eng
Abstract J. Desmond Clark and his colleagues were first to investigate the rich Middle Stone Age (MSA – from ca. 285 to 30,000 years ago) deposits in the Karonga District of northern Malawi in the 1960s. This work demonstrated the enormous potential of the area to inform about Middle to Late Pleistocene hominin lifeways, but further studies were hindered by difficulties in dating the sites and understanding their fine-scale depositional and paleoenvironmental contexts. With the advances that have been made in the fields of geoarchaeology, lithic analysis, palaeoenvironments, and geochronology over the last fifty years, the time is ideal to renew these investigations. Recent survey and excavation in Karonga, Malawi show that MSA lithic artifacts are preserved in a variety of stratified sedimentary contexts and that they exhibit limited weathering or other indications of post-depositional transport. These deposits are in close proximity to the high-resolution paleoenvironmental records derived from sediments at the bottom of nearby Lake Malawi, which provide context for the human behavior recorded by the artifacts. Results of excavations at one of these stratified sites – the Airport Site – are detailed here. This provides a renewed example of the site formation and behavioral data available in the region.
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Confirmed Code
Institutional Status UQ
Additional Notes Special issue - Late Pleistocene lifeways, an African perspective: selected presentations, PAA-Safa 2010

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: Official 2013 Collection
School of Social Science Publications
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Created: Thu, 04 Oct 2012, 15:32:14 EST by Dr Jessica Thompson on behalf of School of Social Science