Cultural transitions in Stone Age and Iron Age in Africa

Lawrence Barham, Professor, University of Liverpool, UK

Emergent Behavioural Diversity in the ‘Long’ Middle Pleistocene of Africa

Larry Barham (PhD 1989, University of Pennsylvania, USA) has been working in Zambia since 1993 and more recently in Ghana. He is based at the University of Liverpool, UK. His current research focus is the behavioural transition from the Early to Middle Stone Age in Africa. The transition encompasses the shift from large hand-held tools to hafted technologies. Hafting marks a new conceptualisation of technology as a process that integrates multiple parts and expertise. This invention emerged from an Acheulean background of working organic materials, making fire and producing complex stone tools. The combinatorial principle of hafting remains with us in the form of modern manufacturing processes. Professor Barham leads the ‘Deep Roots Project’ in Zambia, investigating the archaeological record of the Early to Middle Stone Age transition. Website.

Gavin Whitelaw, KwaZulu-Natal Museum, South Africa

Sequence, homesteads, and marriage in the Iron Age of KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa

Gavin Whitelaw is an archaeologist at the KwaZulu-Natal (KZN) Museum in Pietermaritzburg, South Africa. He did his undergraduate and postgraduate studies at the University of the Witwatersrand in Johannesburg. His interests cover the Iron Age of southern Africa. His research is anthropological in character and he favours interpretations that integrate economy with cosmology. For many years he has been either editor or on the editorial committee of the KZN Museum journal, Southern African Humanities, an annually produced volume that covers archaeological, anthropological, historical and material-cultural research. Through the museum and the South African Archaeological Society, he is involved in the public dissemination of archaeological knowledge. He is currently president of the SA Archaeological Society (till 30 June 2020). Website.

Gilbert Collin Pwiti, Professor, University of Zimbabwe, Zimbabwe

Costly signalling and the Zimbabwe Culture

Gilbert Pwiti holds a BA Honours degree in African Language and History (University of Zimbabwe), a MPhil in Archaeology (University of Cambridge), and a PhD in Archaeology (University of Uppsala). He is currently Professor of Archaeology and Heritage Management at the University of Zimbabwe. He has published widely on research in spatial archaeology, early and later farming communities of southern Africa as well as on various aspects of Cultural Heritage Management. Over the years, he has coordinated a number of regional archaeological research projects, including the Sida/SAREC funded regional archaeological research projects on the development of urbanism in eastern and southern Africa and the NUFU funded archaeological research projects in Eastern Zimbabwe and Central Mozambique. Between 1996 and 2001 he served as the Executive Secretary of the Pan African Association for Prehistory and Related Studies. Website.

Plan Shenjere-Nyabezi, Senior Lecturer, University of Zimbabwe, Zimbabwe

Great Zimbabwe, the Zimbabwe Culture and the Nambya State, north-western Zimbabwe

Plan Shenjere-Nyabezi holds a BA Honours degree in Archaeology at University of Zimbabwe (Zimbabwe), a MA in Archaeology, and a PhD in Archaeology at University of Dar es Salaam (Tanzania). She is currently a Senior Lecturer in Archaeology and Heritage Management at the University of Zimbabwe. Her areas of interest include Archaeozoology, the Zimbabwe Culture, Pastoralism, Ethnoarchaeology and Archaeological Heritage Management. She has published research papers in several international journals and edited monographs. She is currently a Senior Post-Doctoral Fellow on the Volkswagen Foundation Knowledge for Tomorrow Program and a Research Associate with the University of Pretoria Archaeology and Anthropology Department. Website.