The British Lower Palaeolithic: Stones in Contention, 1st Edition (Paperback) book cover

The British Lower Palaeolithic

Stones in Contention, 1st Edition

By John McNabb


428 pages

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Taking as its central theme the issue of whether early Hominins organized themselves into societies as we understand them, John McNabb looks at how modern researchers recognize such archaeological cultures. He examines the existence of a stone tool culture called the Clactonian to introduce the multidisciplinary nature of the subject.

In analyzing the various kinds of data archaeologists would use to investigate the existence of a Palaeolithic culture, this book represents the latest research in archaeology, population dispersals, geology, climatology, human palaeontoloty, evolutionary psychology, environmental and biological disciplines and dating techniques, along with many other research methods.


"This book is a very rich volume and is actually two or even three books within a single book—one presenting general background, data and interpretations about the Lower Paleolithic; one discussing the specific issue of the significance of the 'Clactonian;' and, one illustrating the evolution of scholarly ideas about the Clactonian in their historical context over more than 100 years. … Each goal is perfectly achieved thanks to meticulous reporting and discussion of data."

– Marie Soressi, PalaeoAnthropology

Table of Contents

Part 1: The Clactonian 1. Introduction 2. The Clactonian in its Historical Context Pre-1900 to 1950 3. The Clactonian in its Historical Context 1950 to the Present Day – Decline and Fall 4. Location Location: The Clactonian Sites in their Physical Context 5. The Stones of Contention: The Clactonian Assemblages Part 2: The Clactonian in Context 6. Other Frameworks 7. Hominin Occupation in the Cromerian Complex and in the Early Part of the Anglican Glaciation 8. Hominin Occupation Before, During and After MIS 11 – The Swanscombe Interglacial 9. Hominin Occupation Before, During, and After MIS 9 – The Purfleet Interglacial 10. Hominin Occupation Before, During and After MIS 7 – The Aveley Interglacial Part 3: The Bigger Picture 11. The European Scene 12. How Well Behaved was Homo Heidelbergensis? 13. Conclusion

About the Author

John McNabb is the Director of the Centre for the Archaeology of Human Origins at the University of Southampton; his research interests are focused on the construction of social relations, as seen through material culture, in pre-modern humans. He is a Fellow of the British Academy's 'From Lucy to Language: The Social Brain' project and is a member of the National Ice Age Network.

Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
SOCIAL SCIENCE / Archaeology