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Settlement and Site Location in the Middle and Upper Paleolithic of the VǸzÇùre Valley, France

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dc.contributor.advisor John J. Shea. en_US
dc.contributor.author Sisk, Matthew L. en_US
dc.contributor.other Department of Anthropology en_US
dc.date.accessioned 2012-05-17T12:22:32Z
dc.date.accessioned 2015-04-24T14:48:33Z
dc.date.available 2012-05-17T12:22:32Z
dc.date.available 2015-04-24T14:48:33Z
dc.date.issued 2011-08-01 en_US
dc.identifier Sisk_grad.sunysb_0771E_10640.pdf en_US
dc.identifier.uri http://hdl.handle.net/1951/56120 en_US
dc.identifier.uri http://hdl.handle.net/11401/71696 en_US
dc.description.abstract Human settlement is guided by a suite of economic and social decisions. Hunter- gatherer populations are not restricted by extensive ownership and often focus settlement on important resources. Analysis of settlement patterns left by these groups reveals key information about subsistence and sociality. Patterning among modern groups is extremely varied and represents a dynamic and adaptable land-use strategy. The antiquity of this adaptability is unknown, but comparisons with the patterns left by other hominin species often show it as a derived trait of Homo sapiens However, most of these settlement models are built at a species-level resolution and encompass great chronological and environmental variation. Also, the dense record of recent Homo sapiens populations makes the chance of recognizing settlement variability higher than for preceding hominin species. This project addressed these issues by testing aspects of species-level models for late Middle Paleolithic (Neanderthal) and early Upper Paleolithic ( Homo sapiens) sites in the Middle VǸzÇùre Valley (Dordogne, France). This region has the advantages of diverse environmental characters, and a well-understood archaeological chronology representing several subdivisions of these broad periods. Using tools from Geographic Information Systems, taphonomic biases in the sample were investigated and site locations correlated with relevant landscape characters. This revealed patterning complimenting and refuting aspects of species-level settlement strategies. Upper Paleolithic sites are found significantly closer to the river and at low elevation sheltered locations. They are more likely to be near natural fords in the river and have a good view of these areas. Middle Paleolithic sites, in contrast, are more often found on the higher elevation plateau and within a short distance from multiple biomes. The final distillation of these correlations reveals a pattern of Middle Paleolithic focus on heterogeneous environments where diverse resources would be available. Upper Paleolithic settlement is instead focused on intense exploitation of a single resource, often places where migrating herd animals would be at a disadvantage, like river crossings and narrow valleys. In this small region there is a clear settlement difference between Middle and Upper Paleolithic populations, but more focused studies must be undertaken before these results can be broadly extended. en_US
dc.description.sponsorship This work is sponsored by the Stony Brook University Graduate School in compliance with the requirements for completion of degree. en_US
dc.format Monograph en_US
dc.format.medium Electronic Resource en_US
dc.language.iso en_US en_US
dc.publisher The Graduate School, Stony Brook University: Stony Brook, NY. en_US
dc.subject.lcsh Archaeology -- Geographic information science and geodesy en_US
dc.subject.other Aurignacian, GIS, Landscape Archaeology, Middle Paleolithic, Perigord en_US
dc.title Settlement and Site Location in the Middle and Upper Paleolithic of the VǸzÇùre Valley, France en_US
dc.type Dissertation en_US
dc.mimetype Application/PDF en_US
dc.contributor.committeemember Katheryn C. Twiss en_US
dc.contributor.committeemember Elizabeth C. Stone en_US
dc.contributor.committeemember Randall K. White en_US
dc.contributor.committeemember Russell D. Greaves. en_US

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