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Appears in Collections:Biological and Environmental Sciences Journal Articles
Peer Review Status: Refereed
Title: 78,000-year-old record of Middle and Later stone age innovation in an East African tropical forest
Author(s): Shipton, Ceri
Roberts, Patrick
Archer, Will
Armitage, Simon J
Bita, Caesar
Blinkhorn, James
Courtney-Mustaphi, Colin
Crowther, Alison
Curtis, Richard
d'Errico, Francesco
Douka, Katerina
Faulkner, Patrick
Groucutt, Huw S
Helm, Richard
Kourampas, Nikos
Keywords: Archaeology
Issue Date: 9-May-2018
Citation: Shipton C, Roberts P, Archer W, Armitage SJ, Bita C, Blinkhorn J, Courtney-Mustaphi C, Crowther A, Curtis R, d'Errico F, Douka K, Faulkner P, Groucutt HS, Helm R & Kourampas N (2018) 78,000-year-old record of Middle and Later stone age innovation in an East African tropical forest, Nature Communications, 9 (1), Art. No.: 1832.
Abstract: The Middle to Later Stone Age transition in Africa has been debated as a significant shift in human technological, cultural, and cognitive evolution. However, the majority of research on this transition is currently focused on southern Africa due to a lack of long-term, stratified sites across much of the African continent. Here, we report a 78,000-year-long archeological record from Panga ya Saidi, a cave in the humid coastal forest of Kenya. Following a shift in toolkits ~67,000 years ago, novel symbolic and technological behaviors assemble in a non-unilinear manner. Against a backdrop of a persistent tropical forest-grassland ecotone, localized innovations better characterize the Late Pleistocene of this part of East Africa than alternative emphases on dramatic revolutions or migrations.
DOI Link: 10.1038/s41467-018-04057-3
Rights: This article is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, which permits use, sharing, adaptation, distribution and reproduction in any medium or format, as long as you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons license, and indicate if changes were made. The images or other third party material in this article are included in the article’s Creative Commons license, unless indicated otherwise in a credit line to the material. If material is not included in the article’s Creative Commons license and your intended use is not permitted by statutory regulation or exceeds the permitted use, you will need to obtain permission directly from the copyright holder. To view a copy of this license, visit
Notes: Additional co-authors: Andy I. R Herries, Severinus Jembe, Julia Lee-Thorp, Rob Marchant, Julio Mercader, Africa Pitarch Marti, Mary E. Prendergast, Ben Rowson, Amini Tengeza, Ruth Tibesasa, Tom S. White, Michael D. Petraglia & Nicole Boivin

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