Aegeus Society For Aegean Prehistory

BOOKS | 2016

12 December 2016

Lithics Past and Present. Perspectives on Chipped Stone Studies in Greece

Edited by Paraskevi Elefanti, Niels Andreasen, P. Nick Kardulias & Gilbert Marshall

Lithics Past and Present. Perspectives on Chipped Stone Studies in Greece

City: Uppsala

Year: 2016

Publisher: Åströms Förlag

Series: Studies in Mediterranean Archaeology Vol. CXLIV

Description: Hardback, 171 p., 95 figures, 25 plates, 31x22


While the analysis of stone tools has been a cornerstone of prehistoric archaeology since its inception, their role in the study of Greek sites gained greater traction only in the 1950s. In the intervening 60 years, foreign scholars have produced a great many lithic studies. Over the past three decades, the number of Greek archaeologists who study stone tools has increased significantly and they have added a plethora of material to the literature, at both the substantive and theoretical levels. A key goal of this volume is to highlight these contributions. It was our impression when we began that in some ways lithic studies had been overshadowed by advances in other areas; the environment, diet and genetics. However, the chapters amply demonstrate the sophistication of the sub-discipline and how it has added to our understanding of ancient life in the Aegean. Despite their mundane appearance and uses, stone tools provide critical information about the economic structure of the prehistoric and historic periods in Greece, including craft specialisation, procurement of raw material and trade.

With these goals in mind it was decided to put together a volume of collected papers that would show the current state of lithics research in Greece; a snapshot of where we are, how we got here and where lithics studies may be heading. We invited established scholars and members of the new generation of lithic specialists working in Greece to submit examples of their research. Our aim was to include contributions that were accessible and highlighted new approaches. We focused specifically on chipped stone because this material was used throughout the long human occupation of the region. In addition, the expertise of the editors is the study of flaked stone. We do not question the value of studies focusing on other uses of stone, but felt that chipped stone is sufficiently broad a topic area to warrant such a focused volume. In a collection of this type, the contributions will be a reflection of many things, including the interests of authors who in the end submitted papers. It is important that readers bear this in mind when assessing the book’s coverage. The time it has taken to bring this project to fruition has also meant that many new lithic specialists have begun their careers in the intervening years, a welcome development.


List of contributors [v]
Preface [vii]

Chipped stone research in Greece: past advances and future perspectives [1-10]
Paraskevi Elefanti, Niels Andreasen, P. Nick Kardulias & Gilbert Marshall

Greek stone tools: a history of neglect [11-18]
Curtis Runnels

The role of ethnography in lithic studies today: a matter of analogy or differentiation? [19-32]
Lia Karimali

Methodological issues underlying the analysis of Upper Palaeolithic stone assemblages in Greece [33-46]
Eugenia Adam

The role of lithics in understanding the Mesolithic to Neolithic transition in Greece [47-67]
Janusz K. Kozlowski & Maigorzata Kaczanowska

Lithic technology and the early prehistory of Antikythera [69-94]
James Conolly & Andrew Bevan

On lithic technology terms and semantics. The example of the Asprochaliko Rockshelter Middle Palaeolithic stone industry [95-109]
Stefanos Ligkovanlis

Early Bronze Age chipped stone technology on the Greek mainland. A re-examination of the material and theoretical parameters of production [111-120]
Anna Karabatsoli

Raw material and provenance identification of Late Neolithic and Chalcolithic chert artefacts from Drakaina Cave, Kephalonia, through pétrographie and geochemical analysis [121-140]
Vasilios Melfos & Georgia Stratouli

A survey of chipped stone resources and production in the Argolid [141-158]
James Newhard

Glossary of terms [159-163]
Index [165-171]


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