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Title: Culture, chronology and change in the later Neolithic of north Mesopotamia
Author: Campbell, Stuart
Awarding Body: University of Edinburgh
Current Institution: University of Edinburgh
Date of Award: 1992
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The aim of this thesis is to examine the spatial, temporal and social patterning of the late Neolithic of north Iraq. In traditional terms, this covers the Hassuna and Halaf cultures. Underpinning much of the analysis is a new chronology for the period which fits the available evidence better than has been achieved previously. This chronology emphasises the continuities as much as the changes and stress has been laid on making it general and able to accommodate regional variations. Important new information on the transition between the Hassuna and the Halaf was obtained by the excavation of one site, Khirbet Garsour, and the detailed surface collection of others in the North Jezira Project survey. Instead of this transition being very abrupt, it is argued that it is a smooth change in north Iraq with considerable cultural continuity. The spread of a single ceramic style over central and northern Iraq and northern Syria is proposed as occurring late in the Hassuna/Samarran sequence rather than several hundred years later in the Halaf. In chapter 6, it is argued that the period saw a progressive degradation of the environment in the main areas of settlement, which may have had an important influence on potential subsistence strategies. Chapter 7 presents new information on the sites from the North Jezira Project survey in north Iraq. Site distributions are analysed on as fine a chronological scale as possible and an emerging settlement hierarchy by the end of the Halaf is suggested. This chapter also considers how space was used within sites and suggests that major changes in the composition and relations of social groups may have occurred during this period. Chapter 8 evaluates evidence for long and short distance exchange systems using the examples of obsidian and pottery. It is suggested that exchange of raw materials was already taking place in a sophisticated manner even at the start of the period. There is evidence that these exchange systems were becoming more complex and transferring larger quantities of goods by the end of the Halaf and that new types of products are being included in the exchange.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available