AffiliationUniv Arizona, Sch Anthropol
MetadataShow full item record
PublisherUNIV CHICAGO PRESS
CitationRecognizing Fire in the Paleolithic Archaeological Record 2017, 58 (S16):S175 Current Anthropology
Rights© 2017 by The Wenner-Gren Foundation for Anthropological Research. All rights reserved
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AbstractEveryone agrees that fire has played an important part in the history of the genus Homo. However, because of the sometimes ephemeral and ambiguous nature of the evidence for fire in the Paleolithic record, establishing when and how hominins actively interacted with fire has been difficult. Over the past several decades, multiple techniques have been developed and employed in the search for the origins of human use of fire. Because fire is a natural phenomenon, the identification of burned remains at an archaeological site is generally not considered to be, on its own, convincing evidence for human use of fire. Rather, much of the difficulty of identifying early evidence for fire use has hinged on the question of how to establish a more direct link between burned materials and human activity. Here, we advocate for an approach to the investigation of the history of hominin use of fire that emphasizes an integration of multiple techniques. In particular, we argue that a contextualized study conducted at the microscopic scalewhat we call a microcontextual approachshows the most promise for establishing a behavioral connection between hominins and fire in the archaeological record.
Note12 month embargo; published online: 6 July 2017
VersionFinal published version
SponsorsDeutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft [MI 1748/1-1]