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Welcome to African Archaeology!

The Journal of African Archaeology is an international peer-reviewed periodical appearing half-yearly since 2003. It publishes original papers addressing recent research and developments in African archaeology and related disciplines. The journal's main purpose is to provide scholars and students with a new pan-African forum for discussing relevant topics on the cultural dynamics of past African societies.

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Vol. 1 (1) 2003

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C.R. DeCorse, F.G. Richard & I. Thiaw

Toward a systematic bead description system: a view from the Lower Falemme, Senegal

Journal of African Archaeology, Vol. 1 (1), 2003, pages 77-109, DOI 10.3213/1612-1651-10003

Abstract
This study examines a bead assemblage collected from surveyed and excavated portions of the Falemme (Senegal) to present a classification system for the analysis of archaeological beads in Africa and beyond. Although bead classification poses special problems, it is argued that such analysis is worthwhile, as beads may shed potential light on the dynamics of production, exchange and consumption in the past, on processes of culture change and continuity, and, most particularly, on chronological assessment. Focusing on the latter, the typological analysis helped us extract diagnostic information from the 474 mainly European-made beads which complements and nicely supports the temporal sequence derived from imported trade material and local ceramics.

Résumé
Cette étude s'appuie sur un ensemble de perles constitué au cours de prospections et de fouilles conduites dans le Falemme (Sénégal) afin de présenter un système de classification pour l'analyse des perles archéologiques en Afrique et au-delà. Bien que la classification des perles pose certains problèmes, nous montrons qu'une telle analyse est pertinente, dans la mesure où les perles peuvent donner un nouvel éclairage sur les dynamiques de production, d'échanges et de consommation dans le passé, sur les processus de mutation culturelle et de continuité, et surtout sur la datation relative. Concernant ce dernier point, l'analyse typologique nous a permis de retirer d'importantes indications chronologiques des 474 perles de confection européenne pour la plupart, qui complètent et étayent la séquence chronologique dérivée des artefacts importés et des céramiques locales.




Keywords: beads, methodology, Senegal, trade, typology


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Sonja Magnavita, Peter Breunig, Sam Nixon

Book Reviews Editor:
Jonathan R. Walz, USA

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Graham Connah, Australia
Shadreck Chirikure, South Africa
A. Catherine D'Andrea, Canada
Manfred K.H. Eggert, Germany
Elena Garcea, Italy
Diane Gifford-Gonzalez, USA
Timothy Insoll, UK
Tom Huffman, South Africa
Eric Huysecom, Switzerland
David Killick, USA
Savino di Lernia, Italy
Alexandre Livingstone Smith, Belgium
Scott MacEachern, USA
David Mattingly, UK
Susan Keech McIntosh, USA
David W. Phillipson, UK
Gilbert Pwiti, Zimbabwe
Peter Robertshaw, USA
Robert Vernet, France
Lyn Wadley, South Africa

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Gaby Franke, Germany
Annabelle Gallin, France
Richard Byer, Germany

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Anna Rybar, Germany
Carlos Magnavita, Germany


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