REFLECTIONS ON THE MOBILITY PATTERNS OF MESOLITHIC POPULATIONS
IN SOUTH-WESTERN FRANCE:
the Example of the Brive and Quercy Regions
How was the mobility of Mesolithic groups organized in the Quercy and Brive Basins? Were open-air sites and caves and rock shelter sites complementary? What is the contribution of these different site types to questions concerning mobility patterns? Though it is probably not feasible to apply a single model to these Mesolithic hunter-gatherer societies, it is possible to address some questions through analysis of the material evidence, such as lithic industries, faunal remains, and even vegetal remains. In theory, the variable proportions of these elements reflect specialized site functions, seasonality strategies and the economic organization of these societies and their territories. However, is the variation of these elements linked to socio-cultural and environmental factors, or the function of a specific site-type (open-air, cave or rock shelter)? In the regions considered here, it is difficult to distinguish between these factors due to the variable nature of the bibliographic sources related to the sites, the taphonomic condition of the assemblages, and the great number of open-air sites known only through survey operations. This study has nonetheless enabled us to inventory the available documentation, as well as revealing differences and similarities in the economic strategies of these populations.
To cite this article
Reversat M., 2014 – Reflections on the Mobility Patterns of Mesolithic Populations in South-Western France: the Example of the Brive and Quercy Regions, in Henry A., Marquebielle B., Chesnaux L., Michel S. (eds.), Techniques and Territories: New Insights into Mesolithic Cultures, Proceedings of the Round table, November 22-23 2012, Maison de la recherche, Toulouse (France), P@lethnology, 6, 96-111.
The evolution of stone weapon elements
and cultural dynamics during the Mesolithic
in Southwestern France:
the Case of the Haut Quercy (Lot, France)
Nicolas VALDEYRON, Bruno BOSC-ZANARDO, Thomas BRIAND
Following a recent quantitative and qualitative renewal of archaeological research in the Quercy, this region has become particularly favourable for analyses of the cultural dynamics of Mesolithic societies in southwestern France. These dynamics, principally associated with the evolution of projectile points, are most clearly manifest in the appearance of broad weapon elements (trapeze microliths and other evolved points) at the beginning of the seventh millennium cal BC. Through still poorly understood scenarios, these pieces replace narrow weapon elements (geometric or not). We have developed a research program concerning several thousands of objects recovered at five recently or currently excavated sites in order to obtain a better understanding of these evolutionary processes and to attempt to determine their modalities, rhythms and signification. In this paper, we present the current state of this work and the results obtained for the earliest phases of the Mesolithic.
To cite this article
Valdeyron N., Bosc-Zanardo B., Briand T., 2009 – The Evolution of Stone Weapon Elements and Cultural Dynamics during the Mesolithic in Southwestern France: the Case of the Haut Quercy (Lot, France), in Pétillon J.-M., Dias-Meirinho M.-H., Cattelain P., Honegger M., Normand C., Valdeyron N., Projectile Weapon Elements from the Upper Palaeolithic to the Neolithic, Proceedings of session C83, XVth UISPP World Congress, Lisbon, September 4-9, 2006, P@lethnology, 1, 269-286.