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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:A Reconsideration of the West African Macrolithic Conundrum: New Factory Sites and an Associated Settlement in the Valee du Serpent, Mali
Authors:MacDonald, Kevin C.ISNI
Allsworth-Jones, P.
Periodical:African Archaeological Review
Geographic term:Mali
Stone Age
Anthropology and Archaeology
External link:https://doi.org/10.1007/BF01953039
Abstract:The time period between the Terminal Pleistocene and the mid-Holocene is shared by diverse macrolithic and microlithic industries. The macrolithic phenomenon has remained ill-defined, with most occurrences being generally lumped together as a single group, or attributed to earlier time periods. Recent archaeological investigations in the Vallée du Serpent and southern Gourma regions of Mali have revealed Holocene macrolithic assemblages quite different from the well-known bifacial traditions of Cap Manuel and Manianbougou, but not without parallels from elsewhere in the Sahel and savanna. The most important of the Vallée du Serpent sites is that of Sirakoro-Ancien, where worked stone aggregations are associated with several rings of laterite cobbles believed to be the remnants of structures. Its lithic industry consists of massive flakes, perhaps removed directly from local outcrops, and smaller flakes from prepared cores as well as formal tools. Geomorphological and archaeological evidence suggests an age of the Vallée du Serpent sites somewhere between 9000 and 6000 bp. A new synthesis based upon sites investigated by the authors and the predominantly francophone literature is presented in order to shed light upon this neglected portion of African prehistory. Bibliogr., notes, sum. in English and French.