El Kowm Oasis, Human settlement in the Syrian Desert during the Pleistocene

Jagher, Reto and Elsuede, Hani and Le Tensorer, Jean-Marie. (2015) El Kowm Oasis, Human settlement in the Syrian Desert during the Pleistocene. L'anthropologie, 119 (5). pp. 542-580.

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The area of the El Kowm oasis in the centre of today's Syria is a unique showcase of Middle Eastern prehistory not only for its geographic position within the Arabian Desert, but also for the depth of its history. In fact the core area, about a dozen kilometres across, with the numerous natural springs were an important attractor for game and humans, visiting regularly this region since more than 1.8 million years. All over the periods, from the Lower Palaeolithic to the arrival of farmers, definitely arid conditions prevailed, perfectly showing human adaption to this particular environment, as has been clearly demonstrated by several extensive excavations of exceptionally rich Palaeolithic sites. Exceptional preservation conditions due to a particular geological setting in the context of active or dry springs offer an extraordinary resolution of human behaviour within a limited landscape during the complete period of the Pleistocene, illustrating cognitive capacities of early man to cope readily with arid environments, challenge the migration routes proposed by Out of Africa diffusion models, typically considered to be corridors with a superior environmental potential.
Faculties and Departments:05 Faculty of Science > Departement Umweltwissenschaften > Ehemalige Einheiten Umweltwissenschaften > Urgeschichte (Le Tensorer)
UniBasel Contributors:Le Tensorer, Jean-Marie and Jagher, Reto and Elsuede, Hani
Item Type:Article, refereed
Article Subtype:Research Article
Note:Publication type according to Uni Basel Research Database: Journal article
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Last Modified:08 Sep 2016 08:10
Deposited On:08 Sep 2016 08:10

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