Institute of Archaeology
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Hanna Sosnowska

Is there a diagnostic Mesolithic period in India? Late Pleistocene and Holocene Lithic Assemblages of Bhimbetka and Central India

The main core of the research will consist of lithic analysis of material from Bhimbetka rock-shelter complex in Madhya Pradesh state in India, excavated in the late 70’s and 80’s. Collection from one shelter will be targeted to examine in detail in stratified sequence. An additional assemblage from site/region will be analyzed to assess how representative Bhimbetka sequence is. Potential assemblages from the Son Valley (Univ. of Allahabad) or Gujarat (Univ. of Baroda) are being considered. The research will aim to answer questions like:

  1. W What does “Mesolithic” mean in the Indian context? Is the use of the term justified?
  2. Are there significant differences between assemblages in late Pleistocene and early Holocene?
  3. What technologies and methods were in use? Was there pressure technique present already?
  4. Is it possible to trace the origin of microlithic tradition(s) in the region?
  5. Where is the boundary between Mesolithic (hunter-gatherer societies) and Neolithic/ Chalcolithic? When does the “Mesolithic” end?
  6. How can we define groups of hunter-gatherers coexisting with agriculturalists in the late Holocene? What determines whether those “late” groups are Mesolithic or not?

Supervisors

 Educational background

  • MA, Archaeology, Jagiellonian University, Krakow, Poland, 2010
  • BA, Archaeology, Jagiellonian University, Krakow, Poland, 2008
  • Rock paintings, Bhimbetka
  • Bhimbetka rock-shelter complex, Central India

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