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Welcome to African Archaeology!

The Journal of African Archaeology is an international peer-reviewed periodical appearing half-yearly since 2003. It publishes original papers addressing recent research and developments in African archaeology and related disciplines. The journal's main purpose is to provide scholars and students with a new pan-African forum for discussing relevant topics on the cultural dynamics of past African societies.

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Vol. 3 (2) 2005

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C.M. Kusimba, S.B. Kusimba & D.K. Wright

The development and collapse of precolonial ethnic mosaics in Tsavo, Kenya

Journal of African Archaeology, Vol. 3 (2), 2005, pages 243-265, DOI 10.3213/1612-1651-10053

Abstract
Archaeologists and historians have long believed that little interaction existed between Iron Age cities of the Kenya Coast and their rural hinterlands. Ongoing archaeological and anthropological research in Tsavo, Southeast Kenya, shows that Tsavo has been continuously inhabited at least since the early Holocene. Tsavo peoples made a living by foraging, herding, farming, and producing pottery and iron, and in the Iron Age were linked to global markets via coastal traders. They were at one point important suppliers of ivory destined for Southwest and South Asia. Our excavations document forager and agropastoralist habitation sites, iron smelting and iron working sites, fortified rockshelters, and mortuary sites. We discuss the relationship between fortified rockshelters, in particular, and slave trade.

Résumé
Les archéologues et les historiens ont longtemps cru qu'à l'Age du Fer, il y avait peu de relations entre les villes côtières du Kenya et les zones rurales situées à l'intérieur des terres. Les recherches archéologiques et anthropologiques en cours dans la région de Tsavo, au sud-est du Kenya, montrent une occupation humaine continue depuis l'Holocène. Les habitants de Tsavo avaient une économie basée sur l'élevage, la culture et la production de poteries et de fer. Ils appartenaient à un réseau général d'échanges commerciaux par l'intermédiaire des marchands côtiers et furent même, à un moment, les principaux fournisseurs de l'ivoire destiné à l'Asie du Sud et du Sud-est. Les fouilles archéologiques ont apporté la preuve de ces activités et ont montré l'existence d'habitations agropastorales, d'abris sous roche fortifiés et de sites funéraires. Nous interprétons en particulier les abris sous roche fortifiés comme une réponse au commerce des esclaves.




Keywords: collapse, East Africa, interaction, mosaics, Tsavo, warfare


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Sonja Magnavita, Peter Breunig

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Katie Manning, UK

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Graham Connah, Australia
Shadreck Chirikure, South Africa
A. Catherine D'Andrea, Canada
Manfred K.H. Eggert, Germany
Elena Garcea, Italy
Diane Gifford-Gonzalez, USA
Timothy Insoll, UK
Tom Huffman, South Africa
Eric Huysecom, Switzerland
David Killick, USA
Savino di Lernia, Italy
Alexandre Livingstone Smith, Belgium
Scott MacEachern, USA
David Mattingly, UK
Susan Keech McIntosh, USA
David W. Phillipson, UK
Gilbert Pwiti, Zimbabwe
Peter Robertshaw, USA
Robert Vernet, France
Lyn Wadley, South Africa

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Sam Nixon, UK
Gaby Franke, Germany
Annabelle Gallin, France
Richard Byer, Germany

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Carlos Magnavita, Germany


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