Ontologies of Rock Art : Images, Relational Approaches, and Indigenous Knowledges book cover
1st Edition

Ontologies of Rock Art
Images, Relational Approaches, and Indigenous Knowledges

ISBN 9780367337803
Published March 4, 2021 by Routledge
468 Pages 90 B/W Illustrations

FREE Standard Shipping
USD $160.00

Prices & shipping based on shipping country


Book Description

Ontologies of Rock Art is the first publication to explore a wide range of ontological approaches to rock art interpretation, constituting the basis for groundbreaking studies on Indigenous knowledges, relational metaphysics, and rock imageries.

The book contributes to the growing body of research on the ontology of images by focusing on five main topics: ontology as a theoretical framework; the development of new concepts and methods for an ontological approach to rock art; the examination of the relationships between ontology, images, and Indigenous knowledges; the development of relational models for the analysis of rock images; and the impact of ontological approaches on different rock art traditions across the world.

Generating new avenues of research in ontological theory, political ontology, and rock art research, this collection will be relevant to archaeologists, anthropologists, and philosophers. In the context of an increasing interest in Indigenous ontologies, the volume will also be of interest to scholars in Indigenous studies.

Chapter 14 of this book is freely available as a downloadable Open Access PDF under a Creative Commons Attribution-Non Commercial-No Derivatives 4.0 license available at https://www.taylorfrancis.com/books/edit/10.4324/9780429321863/ontologies-rock-art-oscar-moro-abad%C3%ADa-martin-porr?context=ubx&refId=3766b051-4754-4339-925c-2a262a505074

Table of Contents

PART I Philosophical and Historical Perspectives

1 Rock Art and the Aesthetics of Hyperobjects

Graham Harman

2 Rock Art and the Ontology of Images: The Ecology of Images in Hunter-Gatherer and Agrarian Rock Art

Andrew Meirion Jones

3 Rock Art, Shamanism, and the Ontological Turn

David S. Whitley

4 Ontology and Human Evolution: Neanderthal "Art" and the Method of Controlled Equivocation

Oscar Moro Abadía and Amy A. Chase

PART II Rock Art and Indigenous Knowledges

5 A Lesson in Time: Yanyuwa Ontologies and Meaning in the Southwest Gulf of Carpentaria, Northern Australia

John Bradley, Amanda Kearney, and Liam M. Brady

6 Paradigm Shifts and Ontological Turns at Cloggs Cave, GunaiKurnai Country, Australia

Bruno David et al.

7 Lines of Becoming: Rock Art, Ontology, and Indigenous Knowledge Practices

John Creese

8 Art, Representation, and the Ontology of Images: Some Considerations from the Wanjinawunggurr Tradition, Kimberley, Northwest Australia

Martin Porr

9 Shifting Ontologies and the Use of Ethnographic Data in Prehistoric Rock Art Research

Inés Domingo Sanz

PART III Humans, Animals, and More-than-Human Beings

10 "When Elephants Were People": Elephant/Human Images of the Olifants River, Western Cape, South Africa

John Parkington and Jose M. De Prada-Samper

11 Images-in-the-Making: Process and Vivification in Pecos River-Style Rock Art

Carolyn E. Boyd

12 Rock Art and Relational Ontologies in Canada

Dagmara Zawadzka

13 An Ontological Approach to Saharan Rock Art

Emmanuelle Honoré

14 The Faceless Men: Partial Bodies and Body Parts in Scandinavian Bronze Age Rock Art

Fredrik Fahlander

15 Hunters and Shamans, Sex and Death: Relational Ontologies and the Materiality of the Lascaux "Shaft-Scene"

Robert J. Wallis

PART IV Syncretism, Contact, and Contemporary Rock Art

16 Communities of Discourse: Contemporary Graffiti at an Abandoned Cold War Radar Station in Newfoundland

Peter Whitridge and James Williamson

17 More Than One World? Rock Art that Is Catholic and Indigenous in Colonial New Mexico

Darryl Wilkinson

18 Kwipek, Mi’kma’ki: Pemiaq Aqq Pilua’sik Ta’n Tel Amalilitu’n Kuntewiktuk/Continuity and Change in Mi’kmaw Petroglyphs at Bedford, Nova Scotia, Canada

Bryn Tapper

19 Indigenous Ontologies and the Contact Rock Art of Far West Texas

Jamie Hampson

20 When the Virtual Becomes Actual: Indigenous Ontologies within Immersive Reality Environments

David Robinson, Colin Rosemont, Devlin Gandy, and Brendan Cassidy

View More



Oscar Moro Abadía works as associate professor at Memorial University of Newfoundland (Canada). He specialises in the study of the history and the epistemology of Pleistocene art. 

Martin Porr is associate professor of archaeology and a member of the Centre for Rock Art Research + Management at the University of Western Australia.