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Temaomtale ARK113

Migration and mobility in the Stone Age.

Umiak and crew, Cape Prince of Wales.
Fotographer: Edward Sheriff Curtis

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The course is not offered in the spring 2022.

As more and more information on prehistoric ways of life is accumulating, it seems that people in the Stone Age never actually stood still. From entirely or seasonally mobile hunter-gatherer groups, to mass migrations, transhumance, trade expeditions and regular settlement relocation, we evidently have to rethink the idea that past societies were isolated and insular. Nevertheless, the kinds of mobility encountered and their effects on environment, identity and social structure were very different between different societies.

This course will take you through some of the recent thinking on mobility and migration, explain the basic techniques archaeologists use for reconstructing this aspect of past life, and then discuss all this on the basis of selected case studies from the Stone Age. In particular, we will contextualise movement patterns of hunter-gatherer societies in Norway by using analogies drawn from other parts of the world, and we will introduce you to the debates around mobility and migration in the so-called "sedentary" societies of the central European Neolithic.

In this course, we will also work with a reduced pensum list, giving you the opportunity to train the independent research skills necessary for example for your BA dissertation. Teaching will be through a mixture of lectures (held in English or Norwegian) and seminars/group discussions.