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Reverse Engineering in Prehistory: The Neolithic Bow of La Draga, Spain

AutorBarceló-Álvarez, Juan Antonio; Moitinho, Vera; López, Oriol; Palomo, Antoni; Terradas-Batlle, Xavier
Palabras claveLa Draga
Archaeological sites
Early Neolithic
Archery equipment
Fecha de publicación2018
EditorJohn Wiley & Sons
CitaciónEngaging Archaeology: 25 Case Studies in Research Practice : 219-226 (2018)
ResumenLa Draga is an archaeological site in the northeastern Iberian Peninsula dating to the Early Neolithic era, more than 7000 years ago. Given the extraordinary preservation of objects made of wood and vegetable fiber, this site offers an exceptional window on a period in human history when agriculture and herding were used for the first time in Europe to produce food and new means of living. In this chapter we concentrate on a single kind of object: archery equipment. We do so not only because these represent an important kind of tool, but also because the way we have researched them involves a combination of detective work, forensic research, and state-of-the art computer technology. It is our view that only by “reversing” the prehistoric engineering, in the same way that modern designers do with objects, we can learn how people lived in the deep past. In our efforts to "revive" prehistoric societies, we sometimes need both state-of-the-art modern computer technology and the careful work of archaeologists.
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