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The Green, Green Grass of Home: an archaeo-ecological approach to pastoralist settlement in central Kenya

Boles, OJC; Lane, PJ; (2016) The Green, Green Grass of Home: an archaeo-ecological approach to pastoralist settlement in central Kenya. Azania: Archaeological Research in Africa , 51 (4) pp. 507-530. 10.1080/0067270X.2016.1249587. Green open access

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Abstract

This paper considers the ecological residues of pastoralist occupation at the site of Maili Sita in Laikipia, central Kenya, drawing links with the archaeological record so as to contribute a fresh approach to the ephemeral settlement sites of mobile herding communities, a methodological aspect of African archaeology that remains problematic. Variations in the geochemical and micromorphological composition of soils along transects across the site are compared with vegetation distributions and satellite imagery to propose an occupation pattern not dissimilar to contemporary Cushitic-speaking groups further north. We argue that Maili Sita exemplifies the broad migratory and cultural exchange networks in place during the mid- to late second millennium AD, with pastoralist occupants who were both physically and culturally mobile.

Type: Article
Title: The Green, Green Grass of Home: an archaeo-ecological approach to pastoralist settlement in central Kenya
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1080/0067270X.2016.1249587
Publisher version: http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/0067270X.2016.1249587
Language: English
Additional information: © 2016 The Author(s). Published by Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group. This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
Keywords: Historical ecology, geoarchaeology, pastoralism, Laikipia, Kenya
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
URI: http://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/1538631
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