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Utilizing Rock Art to Trace Human Migration: Case Studies from Sarawak, Malaysian Borneo

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Title: Utilizing Rock Art to Trace Human Migration: Case Studies from Sarawak, Malaysian Borneo
Authors: Hoerman, Rachel
Keywords: Borneo
Southeast Asian Rock Art
“Neolithic”
Austronesian Painting Tradition
Austronesian Engraving Style
Issue Date: Dec 2016
Publisher: [Honolulu] : [University of Hawaii at Manoa], [December 2016]
Abstract: This study uses rock art as a proxy to track human movement on Borneo during the poorly understood “Neolithic” peopling of Island Southeast Asia, c. 6 - 2 ka. This pivotal time period involved major population movements and the advent of agriculture; it also brought with it new “Neolithic” material culture throughout the region. Rock art is a neglected archaeological data source in Southeast Asian archaeology, and Borneo’s rock art holds great potential for studying modern human movement and symbolic behavior. This dissertation inventories the breadth and depth of Bornean rock art and generates a techno-chronological timeline for Bornean rock art to establish a basis for delineating endemic and intrusive rock art design systems from the Paleolithic through modern periods. It evaluates the Bornean presence of two diagnostically “Neolithic” rock art traditions found elsewhere in Island Southeast Asia and the Pacific: the Austronesian Painting Tradition (APT) and Austronesian Engraving Style (AES). Multiple synchronic and diachronic rock art practices are described, including a distinctly Bornean version of the APT and a single instance of the AES that expand our understanding of the Bornean and Southeast Asian archaeological narratives. This work additionally underscores the continued utility of stylistic analysis, relative dating and long-term, innovative rock art conservation in archaeological research.
Description: Ph.D. University of Hawaii at Manoa 2016.
Includes bibliographical references.
URI/DOI: http://hdl.handle.net/10125/51602
Appears in Collections:Ph.D. - Anthropology


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