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Connecting Middle Palaeolithic datasets: The interplay of zooarchaeological and lithic data for unravelling Neanderthal behaviour

MPS-Authors
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Ruebens,  Karen
Department of Human Evolution, Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology, Max Planck Society;

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Smith,  Geoff M.
Department of Human Evolution, Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology, Max Planck Society;

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Dogandžić,  Tamara
Department of Human Evolution, Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology, Max Planck Society;

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Steele,  Teresa E.
Department of Human Evolution, Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology, Max Planck Society;

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Citation

Ruebens, K., Smith, G. M., Dogandžić, T., & Steele, T. E. (2020). Connecting Middle Palaeolithic datasets: The interplay of zooarchaeological and lithic data for unravelling Neanderthal behaviour. Journal of Paleolithic Archaeology, 3, 97-107.


Cite as: http://hdl.handle.net/21.11116/0000-0008-17C4-1
Abstract
The ongoing refinement of archaeological excavation and recording methods over the last decades has led to a significant increase in quantitative Middle Palaeolithic datasets that provide a record of past Neanderthal behaviour. Stone tools and butchered animal remains are the two main categories of Middle Palaeolithic archaeological remains and both provide distinctive insights into site formation and Neanderthal behaviour. However, the integration of these quantitative lithic and zooarchaeological datasets is key for achieving a full understanding of both site-specific and broader-scale patterns of Middle Palaeolithic subsistence. To explore novel ways to enhance the incorporation of these datasets, we organised a session at the 82nd annual meeting of the Society for American Archaeology in Vancouver. An underlying theme was the problem of linking lithic and faunal variability. Are variations in subsistence strategies reflected by changes in toolmaking decisions? This paper will briefly introduce the possible ways these Middle Palaeolithic datasets can be integrated, illustrated with the papers included in this special volume, and discuss its potential for understanding the variability and interconnectedness of Neanderthal technologies and subsistence strategies.