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Title: Rock art of Central India : new discoveries, documentation, analysis and interpretation
Author: Banerjee, Ruman
ISNI:       0000 0004 5923 7483
Awarding Body: University of Bristol
Current Institution: University of Bristol
Date of Award: 2015
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This work investigates three key issues in Central Indian rock art research. The first is the question of chronology. How old is this art? I deployed state of the art dating techniques, namely V-series and screening methods, to assign an absolute chronology to the rock art of Central India, with special reference to Mirzapur and Rewa. Apart from absolute ages, the possibilities of relative dating techniques have also been explored, taking into consideration the techniques of superimposition and colour scheme. A case study has been included to support my hypothesis complementary to the existing framework of relative chronology in the region. The next issue is involved with mapping, where rock-shelter sites were mapped on the landscape creating several GIS models, land use models and finally predictive models to test a few hypotheses in Central Indian rock shelter archaeology. New techniques have been introduced here as well, to quantify the changing landscape along with archaeological record in the regions of Mirzapur and Rewa. This study helped to understand and indentify the threats related to the preservation of painted rock-shelters. Lastly several new sites were discovered over a period of a long field survey and this provided fresh data for Indian rock-shelter archaeology, facilitating the testing of several hypotheses, with a number of caveats, in terms of location and types of rock shelters and finally the role of descriptive statistics in rock art research. On the basis of my research, data collection, laboratory experiments, analyses and ultimately final results and data interpretation, I argue that rock art in some specific regions of Central India dates back to Late Pleistocene age and they are mostly made in red and various shades of red colour. Some of these rock art sites are in great danger because of mining activity, honey collection, fire making and camping activities within these precious sites. Apart from anthropogenic reasons, natural reasons, like the effects of desertification is also damaging this extraordinary corpus. Therefore, proper policy implementation is absolutely imperative to conserve and preserve the cultural heritage of this region.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available