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Redating Shuidonggou Locality 1 and Implications for the Initial Upper Paleolithic in East Asia

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  26 July 2016

Christopher Morgan*
Department of Anthropology, University of Nevada, Reno, 1664 N. Virginia St., Reno, Nevada 89557-0096, USA
Loukas Barton
Department of Anthropology, University of Pittsburgh, 3302 WWPH, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania 15260, USA
Mingjie Yi
Institute of Vertebrate Paleontology and Paleoanthropology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100044, China
Robert L Bettinger
Department of Anthropology, University of California—Davis, One Shields Ave., Davis, California 95616-8522, USA
Xing Gao
Institute of Vertebrate Paleontology and Paleoanthropology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100044, China
Fei Peng
Institute of Vertebrate Paleontology and Paleoanthropology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100044, China
Corresponding author. Email:


A review of recently published temporal data from Shuidonggou Locality 1 indicates that a 40–43 cal ka date for the inception of Initial Upper Paleolithic (IUP) blade-oriented technologies in East Asia is warranted. Comparison of the dates from Shuidonggou to other Asian IUP dates in Korea, Siberia, and Mongolia supports this assertion, indicating that the initial appearance of the IUP in East Asia generally corresponds in time to the fluorescence of the IUP in eastern Europe and western Asia. This conclusion preliminarily suggests that either a version of the IUP originated independently in East Asia just prior to 40 cal ka, or more likely, that an early, initial diffusion of the IUP into East Asia occurred ∼41 cal ka, a hypothesis consistent with current estimates for the evolution or arrival of modern humans in the region.

Copyright © 2014 by the Arizona Board of Regents on behalf of the University of Arizona 

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