Asian Perspectives, 1993 - Volume 32, Number 1 (Spring)

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Asian Perspectives is the leading peer-reviewed archaeological journal devoted to the prehistory of Asia and the Pacific region. In addition to archaeology, it features articles and book reviews on ethnoarchaeology, palaeoanthropology, physical anthropology, and ethnography of interest and use to the prehistorian. International specialists contribute regional reports summarizing current research and fieldwork, and present topical reports of significant sites. Occasional special issues focus on single topics.

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Center for South Asian Studies
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Now showing 1 - 5 of 9
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    Books Received
    (University of Hawai'i Press (Honolulu), 1993)
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    Unraveling the Enigma of the Bi: The Spindle Whorl as the Model of the Ritual Disk
    (University of Hawai'i Press (Honolulu), 1993) Green, Jean M.
    This paper examines the question of the origin of the hi, a Chinese ritual or decorative flat disk with a relatively small hole in the middle, in the light of recent archaeological reports relating to the late Neolithic Liangzhu culture of southern Jiangsu and northern Zhejiang provinces. Other Chinese ritual jades possess tool prototypes. The hypothesis is that the bi and the discoidal whorl of the hand spindle are linked formally, contextually, and historically. In addition to the formal resemblance, the relationship of bi to textile implements, the correspondence of ritually smashed hi with broken whorls, significantly decorated whorls, and the possible ritual spinning of yarn are treated. The Liangzhu cemeteries at Yaoshan and Fanshan present an example of a possible sequence from a complete jade spindle and other jade whorls to small dragon-headed bi and, finally, to the large Liangzhu hi form. KEYWORDS: hi, spindle whorl, jade spindle whorl, Liangzhu, Changjiang River, Lake Tai, Yaoshan, Fanshan, Sidun, Fuquanshan, Caoxieshan, Zhejiang, Jiangsu.
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    Mesolithic Hunter-Gatherers of Keonjhar District, Orissa, India
    (University of Hawai'i Press (Honolulu), 1993) Mohanty, Pradeep
    An extensive archaeological exploration between 1983 and 1989, spanning six seasons, resulted in the discovery of 58 Mesolithic sites in Keonjhar District, Orissa, India. In addition to microlithic artifacts, the most noteworthy feature of these assemblages is the common occurrence of heavy-duty implements; the raw materials selected for these are different from those used for manufacturing microliths. The category of heavy-duty tools has been given a low priority in Indian Mesolithic studies. This paper attempts to account for the heavy-duty tool component in functional-ecological terms. KEYWORDS: Keonjhar, India, South Asia, Mesolithic, heavy-duty implements, microliths.
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    Provenance Studies of Polynesian Basalt Adze Material: A Review and Suggestions for Improving Regional Data Bases
    (University of Hawai'i Press (Honolulu), 1993) Weisler, Marshall I.
    Polynesian basalt adze material is the most widely distributed commodity for tracking prehistoric social interaction across space and through time. Since data bases are rapidly developing, the problems and prospects of current distributional studies need review and evaluation. Definitions common to those undertaking basalt provenance studies are provided; the roles of geological information and spatial scale to distributional studies are discussed; basalt analytic and provenance studies are reviewed; macroscopic, petrographic, and geochemical techniques are evaluated; and suggestions for improving data bases are offered. It is concluded that the nondestructive x-ray fluorescence technique is an alternative to destructive analyses. Careful attention to analytical precision, accuracy, and the use of standards will improve intra- and interlab comparison of data sets. Additional sampling of Polynesian basalt sources is urgently needed. KEYWORDS: Polynesia, adze material, provenance studies, macroscopic, petrographic, geochemical, data standardization, nondestructive x-ray fluorescence.
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