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  • Cited by 6
Cambridge University Press
Online publication date:
January 2015
Print publication year:
Online ISBN:

Book description

Stone tool analysis relies on a strong background in analytical and methodological techniques. However, lithic technological analysis has not been well integrated with a theoretically informed approach to understanding how humans procured, made, and used stone tools. Evolutionary theory has great potential to fill this gap. This collection of essays brings together several different evolutionary perspectives to demonstrate how lithic technological systems are a by-product of human behavior. The essays cover a range of topics, including human behavioral ecology, cultural transmission, phylogenetic analysis, risk management, macroevolution, dual inheritance theory, cladistics, central place foraging, costly signaling, selection, drift, and various applications of evolutionary ecology.


'Like a biface, this useful book about stone tool analysis has three sides, describing three evolutionary approaches to lithic assemblages: selectionist, human behavioral ecology and cultural transmission. Those lithic analysts interested in the application of evolutionary theory must read this book, and all the others should read it.'

Robert L. Kelly - University of Wyoming

'The case studies in Lithic Technological Systems and Evolutionary Theory apply a diverse array of evolutionary theory and methods to lithic technology, making a strong case for the value of evolutionary approaches to lithics. This is a useful book for teaching the uses of evolutionary theory in archaeology.'

Kenneth M. Ames - Portland State University

'Is it evolution yet? In lithic technology studies, the answer is yes. Lithic Technological Systems and Evolutionary Theory is a timely compendium of the latest developments in the application of evolutionary theory to lithic technology - incorporating and integrating both cultural transmission and behavioral ecology approaches to a full range of topics in the field of stone tool technology.'

James L. Boone - University of New Mexico

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  • One - Interpreting Lithic Technology under the Evolutionary Tent
    pp 3-26


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