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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:Elusive Wattle-and-Daub: Finding the Hidden Majority in the Archaeology of the Swahili
Authors:Fleisher, Jeff
LaViolette, Adria
Periodical:Azania: Archaeological Research in Africa (ISSN 1945-5534)
Notes:biblio. refs., ills., maps
Geographic terms:Tanzania
East Africa
Anthropology and Archaeology
Peoples of Africa (Ethnic Groups)
Art, Architecture, Music, Drama
Archaeological sites
Earth houses
Swahili-speaking peoples
Pemba Island (Tanzania)
External link:https://doi.org/10.1080/00672709909511473
Abstract:This article is a report of a three-pronged effort to develop a methodology for recovering non-stone archaeological sites on Pemba Island, Tanzania. It first discusses the 1997 excavation of a house that had stood for the most of the 20th century and was razed by its owner in the early 1990s, and shovel-test pits in the vicinity of the house. Next, two styles of systematic survey are presented. Around the site of Pujini in central western Pemba, a systematic survey based on one-hundred-percent coverage of particular landforms was carried out in 1997, followed in 1998 by a systematic survey based on transects radiating from the site of Chawka, in northern Pemba. The article focuses on what the results of these efforts can tell archaeologists about finding the sites themselves, the first critical step in incorporating non-stone sites into the larger picture of Swahili life. It is becoming increasingly evident that one can only understand the diversity of Swahili culture by combining the archaeology of the Swahili elite - that minority who lived in stone house in stonetowns - with the archaeology of 'the rest', i.e. the early villagers and the urban populations living in wattle-and-daub wards of towns. Bibliogr.