Student funding to attend the pre 2014 PAA / SAfA meeting lithics workshop

Lithic Technological Approaches to the Late Pleistocene Later Stone Age
Organizers: Justin Pargeter (Stony Brook University) and Steven A. Brandt (University of Florida)

During the past decade our knowledge of lithic technological innovations by Late Pleistocene (MIS 5-2) Homo sapiens in Africa has improved dramatically, revealing a diversity of technological patterns that rarely follow linear trajectories. This has made it increasingly problematic to situate lithic data, and the human behaviours that underlie it, within the framework of traditional culture/historic stages and associated industries of the Middle and Later Stone Ages. Researchers have begun to make major theoretical and methodological advances in interpreting Middle Stone Age (MSA) lithic technological variability and how it relates to hunter-gatherer behaviour. However, these same advances have yet to be realized for the early periods of the African Later Stone Age.

To promote inter-analyst contact and initiate a broader Pan-African discussion on what constitutes the “Final MSA”, “MSA/LSA Transitions”, “Early LSA” and other aspects of Late Pleistocene lithic technological variability, we invite you to attend a one-day hands-on lithic workshop on July 13th, 2014. The workshop will take place at the University of Witwatersrand in Johannesburg, South Africa the day before the 2014 PAA / SAfA conference opens in the same city (http://www.paa2014.co.za). The workshop will provide a platform for pan-African dialogue on what the ‘late Pleistocene LSA’ is and how best to move the next generation of scholars forward with behaviorally-relevant approaches to studying the lithics of this broad time period. The workshop is primarily focused on a hands-on approach to learning and communication lithic information that will be facilitated by a number of guest collections brought together by attendees from across Africa.

Through the generous help of the PAST foundation we are looking to fund five South African students to attend this workshop. This funding will include the cost of transportation to and from the workshop as well as accommodation and food while in Johannesburg for the day before the workshop and the day of the workshop.

Interested applicants must be South African citizens/permanent residents and should submit a 250-word abstract explaining how they would benefit from attending the workshop. These abstracts must also include the applicant’s academic affiliation and current degree level.

Abstracts must be submitted to Justin.pargeter@stonybrook.edu by April 4th 2014.

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