Date(s) - August 25, 2017
4:00 pm - 5:00 pm
Room C-249, Clark
Neandertals and modern humans at the crossroads of Eurasia: Paleolithic settlement in the southern Caucasus
The set of cultural phenomena referred to collectively as the Middle Paleolithic (MP) endured for some 200,000 years and stretched from Europe to the Near East and into the western reaches of Asia. It has become clear that the demise of the MP and the arrival of Upper Paleolithic (UP) cultures throughout Eurasia ~47,000 years ago was an extremely complex demographic process that can no longer be characterized as the wholesale replacement of one population by another. Any attempt to explain the spread of fully fledged UP cultures, then, must first address why the MP adaptations that preceded and overlapped with them were so successful for so long. The southern Caucasus lies at the crossroads of Eurasia and, because of its rich Paleolithic record, is poised to contribute in this context. This presentation outlines recent research in the Armenian and Georgian republics and its implications for our understanding of MP cultures and the MP/UP transition.
About the Speaker
CSU Anthropology ’01; PhD Indiana University ’07;
Currently co-directing projects at Olduvai Gorge (since 2012) and in Armenia (since 2009).
Interests: hunter-gatherer ecology, vertebrate taphonomy, zooarchaeology