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Take Shelter! Short-Term Occupations of the Late Paleolithic and the Mesolithic in the French Far West

Abstract : Despite the important development of radiocarbon dating and Bayesian analysis these past years or our ability to interpret the archaeological materials and their spatial organization, the definition of occupation span is still very uncertain in prehistory. The techno-economic approach of lithic materials, using the concept of chaine opératoire segmentation, allows, however, to broach this complex topic. Research on Northwestern Lateglacial and Mesolithic sites essentially invested large open-air sites these past years. If these results brought important data, it remains reductive in the perspective of a diachronic study of paleo-economic systems since small sites, complementary to these large occupations, are not included in the models. These small sites have a low archaeological visibility and are particularly difficult to identify in survey or during rescue archaeology. A new research program entitled “Take shelter!” aims to search for these sites focusing on small Armorican rock shelters. Because of particular geological contexts, these cavities are particularly small and atypical. For these reasons, archaeologists neglected them. The survey, testing, and excavation of some of these rock shelters allow illustrating occupations with very specific techno-economic signals that are interpreted to be good evidence for short-term occupations. From these results, we discuss various archaeological evidences we consider diagnostic of short-term occupation and propose a first diachronic model for the evolution of paleo-economic systems in Northwestern France between the Lateglacial and the end of the Mesolithic.
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Submitted on : Wednesday, January 15, 2020 - 1:58:27 PM
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Nicolas Naudinot, Grégor Marchand. Take Shelter! Short-Term Occupations of the Late Paleolithic and the Mesolithic in the French Far West. João Cascalheira, Andrea Picin. Short-Term Occupations in Paleolithic Archaeology. Definition and Interpretation, Springer, pp.121-146, 2020, Interdisciplinary Contributions to Archaeology, 978-3-030-27402-3. ⟨10.1007/978-3-030-27403-0_6⟩. ⟨hal-02440797⟩



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