At the Core of Process: Rethinking the Early Mesolithic Lithic Assemblages from the Kennet Valley, Berkshire.

  • Raymond Nilson

Student thesis: Phd


This project focuses on the early Mesolithic in the Kennet Valley, Berkshire in southern England. Through an extensive analysis of the lithic assemblages from six prominent early Mesolithic sites (i.e. Thatcham 1958-1961 Sites I, II, and III, Thatcham Sewage Works 1989, Greenham Dairy Farm, and Faraday Road), this thesis explores the social and practical processes which hunter-gatherers engaged in during lithic activities. It investigates the very notion of process and how we as archaeologists, often negate such phenomena in favour of strict technical and functional aspects associated with lithic assemblages from this period. Drawing upon this argument, this study explores and critiques the traditional theory that Mesolithic inhabitations were nothing more than functional type sites (e.g. hunting and base camps). Instead, it advocates an approach which seeks to illuminate that these occupations were derived from many historical and contemporary social and practical processes, which were embedded within lithic activities that were largely responsible for the continual production of the early Mesolithic landscape in the Kennet Valley.
Date of Award31 Dec 2016
Original languageEnglish
Awarding Institution
  • The University of Manchester
SupervisorChantal Conneller (Supervisor) & Hannah Cobb (Supervisor)


  • Early Mesolithic, Lithics, Process

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