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Design and connectivity: the case of Atlantic rock art

Design and connectivity: the case of Atlantic rock art
Design and connectivity: the case of Atlantic rock art
Circles, cup-marks and wavy lines are some of the most emblematic motifs associated with Atlantic Rock Art. The term ‘Atlantic’ was only introduced in the 1940s and is used throughout this thesis as it reflects the widespread distribution of the prehistoric assemblage of rock art, but also the geographic scope of this investigation. This particular iconography is known from Portugal, through to Spain, Ireland, England and up to Scotland, sharing a number of characteristics. Prior to the use of this expression, Atlantic Art was known by a variety of designations that demonstrate the fragmented character of its historiography and the regional nature of investigations. In 1997 Bradley’s study introduced a turning point in investigations, with an inter-regional approach and the premise of Landscape Archaeology. This contrasted with traditional studies, more focused on the motifs and creation of typologies, failing to view Atlantic Art holistically, as a socially meaningful practice. In this thesis I set out to investigate differences and similarities of Atlantic Art. I define what its quintessential characteristics are beyond the motif typologies, and identify regional variations. Contextualizing these similarities and deviations, I assess the social and cultural implications of its creation and use. In each one of my five study areas (one in each country), I subjected empirical data to a three-scale investigation: i) Graphic – to study the motifs, ii) Sensorial – to study the rock medium and iii) Environmental – to study the landscape placement. These were developed under principles of Relational Ontology and Assemblage Theory, combining a multi-scalar methodology with a dynamic perspective of the data, explored through a detailed categorical scheme and its analysis with a Presence/Absence Matrix (PAM), spatial analysis carried out with GIS and Social Network Analysis (SNA) to relate and explore the differences and similarities, relationships and connectivity between the study areas. Concepts of developmental psychology and cultural transmission were used to posit that the tradition spread through methods of teaching. Contextualizing the tradition chronologically, it became clear that it formed another transformative processes that characterised the Neolithic.
University of Southampton
Valdez-Tullett, Joana
bdfe5d2b-68f4-42fb-a661-4d2972c2dc58
Valdez-Tullett, Joana
bdfe5d2b-68f4-42fb-a661-4d2972c2dc58
Jones, Andrew
3e8becff-0d46-42eb-85db-2dd4f07e92a3
Wheatley, David
58266ad0-4ea1-4b1b-a8c3-9fd902931828
Sturt, Fraser
442e14e1-136f-4159-bd8e-b002bf6b95f6

Valdez-Tullett, Joana (2017) Design and connectivity: the case of Atlantic rock art. University of Southampton, Doctoral Thesis, 712pp.

Record type: Thesis (Doctoral)

Abstract

Circles, cup-marks and wavy lines are some of the most emblematic motifs associated with Atlantic Rock Art. The term ‘Atlantic’ was only introduced in the 1940s and is used throughout this thesis as it reflects the widespread distribution of the prehistoric assemblage of rock art, but also the geographic scope of this investigation. This particular iconography is known from Portugal, through to Spain, Ireland, England and up to Scotland, sharing a number of characteristics. Prior to the use of this expression, Atlantic Art was known by a variety of designations that demonstrate the fragmented character of its historiography and the regional nature of investigations. In 1997 Bradley’s study introduced a turning point in investigations, with an inter-regional approach and the premise of Landscape Archaeology. This contrasted with traditional studies, more focused on the motifs and creation of typologies, failing to view Atlantic Art holistically, as a socially meaningful practice. In this thesis I set out to investigate differences and similarities of Atlantic Art. I define what its quintessential characteristics are beyond the motif typologies, and identify regional variations. Contextualizing these similarities and deviations, I assess the social and cultural implications of its creation and use. In each one of my five study areas (one in each country), I subjected empirical data to a three-scale investigation: i) Graphic – to study the motifs, ii) Sensorial – to study the rock medium and iii) Environmental – to study the landscape placement. These were developed under principles of Relational Ontology and Assemblage Theory, combining a multi-scalar methodology with a dynamic perspective of the data, explored through a detailed categorical scheme and its analysis with a Presence/Absence Matrix (PAM), spatial analysis carried out with GIS and Social Network Analysis (SNA) to relate and explore the differences and similarities, relationships and connectivity between the study areas. Concepts of developmental psychology and cultural transmission were used to posit that the tradition spread through methods of teaching. Contextualizing the tradition chronologically, it became clear that it formed another transformative processes that characterised the Neolithic.

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PhD JVT Vol.1 - Author's Original
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PhD JVT Vol.2 - Author's Original
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Published date: July 2017

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 426895
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/426895
PURE UUID: 2f230138-33f6-4edf-85ff-dbac260c5243

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Date deposited: 14 Dec 2018 17:30
Last modified: 31 Jul 2020 04:01

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Contributors

Author: Joana Valdez-Tullett
Thesis advisor: Andrew Jones
Thesis advisor: David Wheatley
Thesis advisor: Fraser Sturt

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