Comparing two OIS 5 lithic assemblages from the Cape coast, South Africa.
In this paper lithic assemblages from two Late Pleistocene OIS 5 middens on the Cape coast - Klasies River main site and Ysterfontein 1 are compared. Klasies River, on the south cape coast has provided an abundant sample of stone artefacts from OIS 5 – the MSA l and MSA ll technocomplexes. Recent work at Ysterfontein site has yielded the largest lithic sample so far from the Cape west coast of a comparable age - the YFT assemblage is estimated to date to within OIS 5c to 5a. This provides an ideal opportunity to compare lithic technlological behavior of populations that lived before 75 000 years ago - a focus that is sorely needed, as the spotlight of research on cultural change in the Late Pleistocene in South Africa has conventionally primarily been on the Howiesons Poort and Still Bay industries. The hypothesis is put forward that the typological and technological variability from these assemblages from Ysterfontein 1 and Klasies River indicate at least three clearly discernable OIS 5 technocomplexes.
Investigating the technical behavior of humans that lived around 100 000 years ago on the Cape coast is of more than parochial interest- cultural changes in all of Africa provide a window into the cognitive potential of the kind of humans that lived at the time of the expansion Out of Africa. From a wider African perspective, a similar degree of patterned variability in OIS 5 seems to be, for example, recognizable in Northernaround 100 000 years ago were skilled foragers able to change their technological responses according to the changing contexts. Africa, the source area of populations moving Out of Africa. Humans living around 100 000 years ago were skilled foragers able to change their technological responses according to the changing contexts.
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