Reading Lapita in near Oceania : intertidal and shallow-water pottery scatters, Roviana Lagoon, New Georgia, Solomon Islands

ResearchSpace Repository

Show simple item record

dc.contributor.advisor Dr. Peter Sheppard en
dc.contributor.advisor Dr. Simon Holdaway en Felgate, Matthew Walter en 2007-07-19T05:01:09Z en 2007-07-19T05:01:09Z en 2003 en
dc.identifier.citation Thesis (PhD--Anthropology)--University of Auckland, 2003. en
dc.identifier.uri en
dc.description.abstract Lapita is the name given by archaeologists to a material culture complex distributed from Papua New Guinea to Samoa about 3000 years ago, which marks major economic changes in Near Oceania and the first settlement by humans of Remote Oceania. Those parts of Solomon Islands that lie in Near Oceania, together with Bougainville, comprise a large gap in the recorded distribution of Lapita, which the current research seeks to explain. At Roviana Lagoon, centrally located in this gap, scatters of pottery, stone artefacts, and other stone items are found in shallow water in this sheltered, landlocked lagoon, initially thought to be late derivatives of Lapita. This research seeks method and theory to aid in the interpretation of this type of archaeological record. Intensive littoral survey discovered a wider chronological range of pottery styles than had previously been recorded, including materials attributable directly to the Lapita material culture complex. A study of vessel brokenness and completeness enabled sample evaluation, estimation of a parent population from which the sample derived, assessment of the state of preservation of the sample, and systematic choice of unit of quantification. Studies of wave exposure of collection sites and taphonomic evidence from sherds concluded that the cultural formation process of these sites was stilt house settlement (as found elsewhere in Near Oceania for Lapita) over deeper water than today. Falling relative sea levels and consequent increasing effects of swash-zone processes have resulted in high archaeological visibility and poor state of preservation at Roviana Lagoon. Analysis of ceramic and lithic variability and spatial analysis allowed the construction of a provisional chronology in need of further testing. Indications are that there is good potential to construct a robust, high-resolution ceramic chronology by focussing on carefully controlled surface collection from this sort of location, ceramic seriation and testing/calibration using direct dating by AMS radiocarbon and Thermoluminescence. Data on preservation and archaeological visibility of stilt house settlements along a sheltered emerging coastline allows preservation and visibility for this type of settlement to be modeled elsewhere. When such a model is applied to other areas of the Lapita gap, which are predominantly either less favourable for preservation or less favourable for archaeological visibility, the gap in the distribution of Lapita can be seen to be an area of low probability of detection by archaeologists, meaning there is currently no evidence for absence of settlement in the past, and good reason to think that Lapita was continuously distributed across Near Oceania as a network of stilt village settlement. This finding highlights the need for explicit models of probability of detection to discover or read the Lapita archaeological record. Keywords: pottery; Lapita; formation processes; surface archaeology; tidal archaeology; Oceania en
dc.format Scanned from print thesis en
dc.language.iso en en
dc.publisher ResearchSpace@Auckland en
dc.relation.ispartof PhD Thesis - University of Auckland en
dc.relation.isreferencedby UoA1213303 en
dc.rights Items in ResearchSpace are protected by copyright, with all rights reserved, unless otherwise indicated. en
dc.rights.uri en
dc.title Reading Lapita in near Oceania : intertidal and shallow-water pottery scatters, Roviana Lagoon, New Georgia, Solomon Islands en
dc.type Thesis en Anthropology en The University of Auckland en Doctoral en PhD en
dc.subject.marsden Fields of Research::420000 Language and Culture::420300 Cultural Studies::420307 Pacific cultural studies en
dc.rights.holder Copyright: The author en
pubs.local.anzsrc 1601 - Anthropology en Faculty of Arts en

Files in this item

Find Full text

This item appears in the following Collection(s)

Show simple item record


Search ResearchSpace

Advanced Search