Discovery of an outstanding Hoabinhian site from the Late Pleistocene at Doi Pha Kan (Lampang province, northern Thailand) - Archive ouverte HAL Access content directly
Journal Articles Archaeological Research in Asia Year : 2019

Discovery of an outstanding Hoabinhian site from the Late Pleistocene at Doi Pha Kan (Lampang province, northern Thailand)

Abstract

In Mainland Southeast Asia the Hoabinhian culture corresponds to the legacy of using massive tools made on cobbles, a techno-complex that persisted in a tropical environment for about 30,000 years. During this period, human burial practices also appear to be uniform and limited to burials in "flexed" position. However, stasis in cultural patterns is unlikely over such a long time period and large geographic area, and although new data is emerging on nuances in lithic technologies, the limited number of fully documented burials prevents debate on this issue. In a regional review of Hoabinhian burials we discuss the limitations of using the broad term 'flexed' burials, which can conceal important differences/similarities among cases. We use an archaeo-thanatological approach to describe in detail three burials at Doi Pha Kan site, Lampang province, northern Thailand. Differences are observed in the "flexed" positions of the bodies, the anatomical characteristics of the individuals, and the nature of the offerings. General similarities in burial practices among sites in south China and north Vietnam are now documented in northern Thailand at Doi Pha Kan. We promote the archaeo-thanatological approach to generate relevant descriptions of burials, allowing similarities and/or differences in burial practices over time and within/between regions to be accurately assessed. This approach is essential to establish relevant cultural frameworks that can, in the future, be compared with morphological and genetic data to describe population movements and/or cultural indigenous influences on funerary practices in Mainland Southeast Asia.
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Dates and versions

hal-02977598 , version 1 (25-10-2020)

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Valéry Zeitoun, Prasit Auetrakulvit, Antoine Zazzo, Alain Pierret, Stéphane Frère, et al.. Discovery of an outstanding Hoabinhian site from the Late Pleistocene at Doi Pha Kan (Lampang province, northern Thailand). Archaeological Research in Asia, 2019, 18, pp.1-16. ⟨10.1016/j.ara.2019.01.002⟩. ⟨hal-02977598⟩
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