Stefan Karol Kozlowski

Hardback. 380p, 200 b/w illus (Oxbow Books 2009).

Studies of the European Mesolithic have gone through a renaissance since the seminal Warsaw conference on the subject in 1973, and Stefan Kozlowski has been at its heart. This book presents a comprehensive, re-edited selection of his most important writings on the subject, along with new papers written especially for this edition. Kozlowski begins with thematic chapters exploring Mesolithic archaeology's key themes - the technologies people employed, the human ecology of Mesolithic communities and chronology. In a series of core chapters arranged according to European macro-regions, he then examines the diversity of Europe's Mesolithic cultures, remembering Kapuscinski's adage that 'for most people the world ends on the threshold of their own home, the outskirts of their own village, the borders of the valley they live in at the farthest.' He argues that the Mesolithic 'stage' resulted from the adaptation of Palaeolithic tundra communities to the new ecological conditions of the early Post Glacial, to a forested environment where the primitive agriculture that emerged in the Mediterranean region was not possible. With his eye simultaneously on both the continental and local levels, Kozlowski offers a compelling portrait of a period in which Europe was characterised by a wide range of different human ecologies, and seethed with human activity from the Pyrenees to the Urals. 

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