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Title: Australian Aboriginal Blade Production Methods on the Georgina River, Camooweal, Queensland
Contributor(s): Moore, Mark  (author)orcid 
Publication Date: 2003
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Abstract: Blade technology arose in northern Australia around 5000-6000 BP and persisted into the historic period; hence the ethnographic literature is rich in accounts of stone blades and blade-making in Aboriginal societies. This literature is an important source of information for archaeologists in northern Australia, but it has sometimes resulted in an amalgamation of archaeological and ethnographic interpretation.This study segregates these sources by comparing an archaeological reconstruction of blade-making in Camooweal, Queensland, to ethnographic accounts across northern Australia.Archaeological analysis revealed two reduction trajectories. In the first trajectory, three methods of platform creation and blade removal sequences produced pointed blades. These Levallois-like methods involved alternating episodes of core face preparation with the removal of the "target" blade. The second trajectory involved the serial production of small, non-pointed blades from prismatic cores. Certain accounts suggest that the first trajectory produced large blades for highly ritualized roles. However, seen as a whole, the ethnography seems to indicate that small blades were used in ways similar to large blades. Tracking this pattern from the historic period into prehistory - and correlating it with the archaeologically defined reduction trajectories - will require a thorough archaeological knowledge of the structure of Aboriginal stone technology.
Publication Type: Journal Article
Source of Publication: Lithic Technology, 28(1), p. 35-63
Publisher: University of Tulsa, Department of Anthropology
Place of Publication: United States of America
ISSN: 0197-7261
Fields of Research (FoR) 2008: 210104 Archaeology of Australia (excl Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander)
Peer Reviewed: Yes
HERDC Category Description: C1 Refereed Article in a Scholarly Journal
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Appears in Collections:Journal Article
School of Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences

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