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Kinahan, J. 2018. A ritual assemblage from the third millennium BC in the Namib Desert and its implications for the archaeology and rock art of shamanic performance. Azania: Archaeological Research in Africa, 53(1): 40-62


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A ritual assemblage from the third millennium BC in the Namib Desert and its implications for the archaeology and rock art of shamanic performance.

Summary / Notes:

A unique assemblage of ritual objects is described from Falls Rock Shelter in the Dâures massif of Namibia, a major concentration of rock art sites linked to hunter-gatherer shamanic traditions. Occupation of the sites commenced about five thousand years ago and, although there is no direct dating for the rock art itself, it is thought to have been executed during the same period. The assemblage reported here, and dated to approximately 2750 cal. BC, is associated with the earliest evidence of Holocene occupation. Similarities between objects in the assemblage, their archaeological context and ritual paraphernalia depicted in the rock art provide new insights into the nature of shamanic performance in the Namib Desert. Keywords: Holocene, hunter-gatherers, ritual objects, shaman, rock art, Namib Desert.

Year: 2018

Type: Journal Article

URL: https://doi.org/10.1080/0067270X.2018.1423757


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