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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:Towards a Comparative Archaeology of Africa's Islands
Author:Mitchell, PeterISNI
Periodical:Journal of African Archaeology
Geographic terms:Red Sea
Indian Ocean islands
Anthropology and Archaeology
External link:https://www.jstor.org/stable/43135936
Abstract:This paper reviews previous archaeological work on the islands lying off the western and eastern shores of the African continent, in the Atlantic and Indian Oceans and in the Red Sea, and asks what could be obtained from more systematic research. Attention is paid to the Dahlak archipelago (Eritrea); Pemba, Unguja (Zanzibar) and Mafia (Tanzania); the Comores; Mayotte; Madagascar; the Seychelles; Mauritius, Réunion; São Tomé and Princípe; Annobón and Bioko (Equatorial Guinea); the Bijagós archipelago (Guinea-Bissau); Cape Verde; the Canary Islands; the Ilhas Selvagens; Madeira; Porto Santo; and the Azores. Several themes are identified, to all of which a comparative archaeology of Africa's islands could contribute: patterns of colonization and abandonment; transformations of island ecology wrought by human settlement; the role of islands in systems of international trade; the establishment of plantation economies; and the constitution and development of distinctive island cultures. Emphasis is also placed on the contribution that such a comparative archaeology could make to island archaeology as a whole and to enhancing the global profile of Africanist archaeological research. Bibliogr., sum. in English and French. [ASC Leiden abstract]