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Preservation bias: is rice overrepresented in the archaeological record

Castillo, C; (2018) Preservation bias: is rice overrepresented in the archaeological record. Archaeological and Anthropological Sciences 10.1007/s12520-018-0717-4. (In press). Green open access

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Abstract

Most charring experiments are carried out in the muffle furnace in highly controlled conditions and tackle the taphonomic issues of seed shrinkage and distortion caused by carbonisation. This paper presents the results from charring experiments conducted using real fire conditions. The objective of this study is to reproduce the charring processes that occur naturally and so address the issue of preservation biases which occurred in prehistoric contexts of carbonisation. This is particularly important in addressing the possible overrepresentation of rice over other taxa in the archaeological record. Prior charring experiments focus on Old World crops, but in this study the taxa used are East, South and Southeast Asian cereals and pulses. An ethnographic study conducted in Thailand examining the rice processing stages of dehusking and winnowing is also included since differential preservation may also result from crop processing. Archaeological results from sites in Mainland Southeast Asia are then interpreted using the results of the charring experiments and the ethnographic data.

Type: Article
Title: Preservation bias: is rice overrepresented in the archaeological record
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1007/s12520-018-0717-4
Publisher version: https://doi.org/10.1007/s12520-018-0717-4
Language: English
Additional information: This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons license, and indicate if changes were made.
Keywords: Carbonisation, Cereals, Pulse,s Archaeobotany, Thailand
UCL classification: UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH > Faculty of SandHS > Institute of Archaeology
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH > Faculty of SandHS > Institute of Archaeology > Institute of Archaeology Gordon Square
URI: http://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10060922
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