(Artikelnr: 9781782979272)

The Bell Beaker Transition in Europe. Mobility and Local Evolution during the 3rd Millennium BC

Prieto Martinez, M.P., L. Salanova (eds)

Hardback. 216 pp. Richly illustrated. Oxbow 2015.

Could the circulation of objects or ideas and the mobility of artisans explain the unprecedented uniformity of the material culture observed throughout the whole of Europe? The 17 papers presented here offer a range of new and different perspectives on the Beaker phenomenon across Europe. The focus is not on Bell Beaker pottery but on social groups (craft specialists, warriors, chiefs, extended or nuclear families), using technological studies and physical anthropology to understand mobility patterns during the 3rd millennium BC. Chronological evolution is used to reconstruct the rhythm of Bell Beaker diffusion and the environmental background that could explain this mobility and the socio-economic changes observed during this period of transition toward Bronze Age societies.

The chapters are mainly organised geographically, covering Eastern Europe, the Mediterranean shores and the Atlantic coast of the Iberian Peninsula, includes some areas that are traditionally studied and well known, such as France, the British Isles or Central Europe, but also others that have so far been considered peripheral, such as Norway, Denmark or Galicia. This journey not only offers a complex and diverse image of Bell Beaker societies but also of a supra-regional structure that articulated a new type of society on an unprecedented scale.
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