CHAPTER 11: NEW IDEAS, NEW WORLD: Life in the Upper Paleolithic
There are early evidence for artistic and sympbolic expression reflected in nonutilitarian objects.
71 lumps of red ochre found in Qafzeh Cave, Israel = dating 90 000 ya
oRed ochre is a form of hermatite – a mineral consisting of iron oxide
oCan attribute this to human intelligence
Items of adornment (decorate ourselves with) have been found in Blombos Cave in South Africa.
oFound 40 perforated mollusc shell beads = dating to 75 000 ya
oThe Blombos shells was perhaps used to hang the beads from a necklace
Comparing the Middle and Upper Paleolithic
Upper Paleolithic (Europe) = Late Stone Age (Africa) -> 40 000 to 10 000 ya
oExhibit increases in technological sophistication
Middle Paleolithic (Europe) = Middle Stone Age (Africa) -> 250 000 to 40 000 ya.
Major differences were examined btwn these two cultures:
1. Stone tool technologies based on the production of elongated blades rather than flakes
oBlades: flakes that are twice as long as they are wide
o52 000 ya we see systematic movement toward method of stone tool production
Upper Paleolithic stone tool technologies marked the elongated blades seen at
Ksar Akil in Lebanon dated to 52 000 ya
oBlade-based stone tool technology developed in western Europe by about 35 000 B.P.
The Aurignacian tools include long, sharp cutting tools; engraving tools called
burins; and stone scrapers.
Gravettian tradition: an upper paleolithic toolmaking tradition, characterized
by the production of small and denticulate knives – dated from 27 000 to 21 000
Solutrean tradition: dated from 21 000 to 16 000 ya, includes stone toolmaking
tradition of the European Upper Paleolithic.
•Bifacially flaked, symmetrical, leaf shaped projectile points (pointed
tool/weapon, bone, antler tip hafted onto a shaft – which is thrown or
shot at target. Includes sprear points and arrow head.
Magdelanian: from 16 000 to 11 000 B.P. produced very small microblades (set
into handles bone, wood, antler)
•Known for manufacture of bone and antler tools.
•A late upper paleolithic culture in Europe
•Barbed harpoons, carved decorative objects and cave paintings.
2. Broadening of the subsistence base to include big-game hunting, small-mammal trapping,
fishing, and catching birds.
oMiddle Paleolithic inhabitants were opportunistic hunters, killing what they could when
oUpper Paleolithic were habitual hunters
Hunting and trapping small mammals supplied food for them