Prehistoric Archaeology along the Zagros Flanks (Oriental Institute Publications)

Prehistoric Archaeology along the Zagros Flanks (Oriental Institute Publications)

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Robert J. Braidwood set out with his wife Linda in the spring of 1948 to explore the field evidence for the transition from hunter-gatherer way of life to sedentary food production in the region surrounding the Mesopotamian Plain. This initial work started many archaeologists thinking about how the processes that lay behind this fundamental change, and ultimately other transitions, could be documented archaeologically. His pioneering effort to introduce specialists from the geological and biological sciences into work on relevant problems in this transition brought about a new set of standards for fieldwork in the Near East and a new appreciation of the richness of the multidimensional archaeological record that can result from these studies. This volume is the final report on the Braidwoods' initial phase of exploration from 1948 to 1955 in the Chemchemal Valley and adjacent regions of Iraqi Kurdistan. In this sense it is a work that can be viewed as the result of a study begun at a transition within archaeology itself, from the goals and techniques of the period between the wars to the methods and purposes that characterize the discipline at present. Approximately half the volume is devoted to reports on the architecture and artifacts recovered during three seasons of work at Jarmo, the first early village site with aceramic levels excavated in the Near East. Substantial sections are also devoted to reports on the earlier aceramic site of Karim Shahir and the later (Halafian) site of Banahilk. [From a review by Arthur J. Jelinek in the Bulletin of the American Schools of Oriental Research 265 (1987) 87-88].

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