Basell, Laura S.
Middle Stone Age (MSA) site distributions in eastern Africa and their relationship to Quaternary environmental change, refugia and the evolution of Homo sapiens
[in special issue: Ice Age Refugia and Quaternary Extinctions: An Issue of Quaternary Evolutionary Palaeoecology]
Quaternary Science Reviews, 27, (27-28), . (doi:10.1016/j.quascirev.2008.09.010).
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This paper considers the evolution of Homo sapiens in eastern Africa in relation to refugia and bottlenecks around 200 ka BP, at a macro scale. Middle Stone Age (MSA) lithics, site distributions and locations are analysed in relation to palaeovegetation maps of the last glacial/interglacial cycle, which are used as a proxy for earlier climate cycles. A “push and pull” model is then postulated for the spread of Homo sapiens out of refugia in eastern Africa, involving both volcanism (push) and habitat availability (pull). A date within OIS 5 is suggested for this expansion to other parts of the continent, and potentially further afield, contrary to a frequently proposed expansion within OIS 3.
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