Coast-inland mobility in hunter-gatherer societies

Workshop – University of Oslo – Museum of Cultural History

October 8th-10th, 2019

Outline of the topic

This workshop will explore the topic of hunter-fisher-gatherer mobility and how it can be studied archaeologically, with special focus on the coastal zone (WP 4 of the IRN). Topics such as the use of landscape or seascape, seasonal movement, linear movement as well as links and connectivity between people and groups will be central to the discussion. An important part of discussing mobility is the question of social organization and possible social hierarchies. Furthermore, movement of people or ideas are central for the transformation of Mesolithic societies in the course of the neolithisation.

Mobility can be studied from a variety of perspectives and can be approached with different archaeological, geographical, chemical and spatial methods. It reaches from empiric studies of the distribution of artefacts and raw materials, via studies of provenience and migration, to considerations of means of transport and bodily experience of movement. Furthermore, it includes perspectives on the character of seascapes and ways of using the sea for transport and communication and of the different coastal zones, including the hinterland, and their accessibility. By studying these aspects, and combining different parameters, more routinized behaviour, as well as pathways and routes might be understood more closely. Thus, the workshop aims at carving out limitations and future possibilities of the discussion of movement, on the basis of the Mesolithic coastal record.


Tuesday, October 8th

9.00-9.45        Coffee and informal welcome

10.00-12.00                Open seminar

10.00-10.05    Welcome

10.05-10.30    The PrehCOAST-network and coast-inland relations in Mesolithic Western France (Grégor Marchand, CNRS, University Rennes-1, France)

10.30-10.55    The relevance of PrehCOAST for Southeast Norway (Almut Schülke, KHM, UiO, Norway)                   

10.55-11.20    PrehCOAST and Northern Spain (Pablo Arias, University of Cantabria, Spain)

11.20-11.45    The Latvian coast of the Baltic Sea and its place in the story of prehistory (Valdis Bērziņš, University of Latvia, Latvia)

11.45-12.00    Questions and discussion

12.15-13.15    lunch

From 13.30 to ca. 17.00     Workshop

«Coastal mobility/coast-inland mobility in hunter-gatherer societies”

– Introduction to the Coastal mobility/coast-inland mobility in hunter-gatherer societies (Almut Schülke)

– Adaptation of the first afro-pastoral societies in the Ponant Islands (Yvan Pailler and Pierre Stéphan)

– Mobility and connectivity in Final Palaeolithic and Early Mesolithic, NW-Europe (Inger Marie Berg Hansen)

– Mobility of the last hunter-gatherers of Atlantic France: but where have my tools gone?     (Grégor Marchand)

– Pablo Arias: to be announced

– Hinterland discoveries. Middle Mesolithic woodlan utilization and the case of the Eidsberg  site, Eastern Norway (Axel J. Mjærum)

– Coast-inland links in Latvia: rivers, amber and ceramics (Valdis Bērziņš)

– Miriam Cubas Morera: to be announced

Wednesday, October 9th

9.00-15.00      Excursion to Mesolithic coastal sites in the Oslofjord area

15.00-c.17.00  organizers’ meeting (at professorboligen) and possibility of studying artefact material (at St. Olavsgate 29)

Thursday, October 10th

9.00-12.15                  Continuation Workshop

«Coastal mobility/coast-inland mobility in hunter-gatherer societies”

– Raw materials on the move. Approaching Mesolithic mobility and networks through minimum analytical nodule analysis (Guro Fossum)

– Flint and knapping technology as indicator for coast-inland mobility in hunter-gatherer societies in the Eastern Baltic 6th-3rd millennium BC (Mārcis Kalniņš)

– Technical systems of the Holocene Maritime Hunter-Gatherers from Brittany: preliminary results through the lithic assemblage of Téviec (Jorge Calvo)

– The 82-Kilometer fit (Svein Vatsvåg Nielsen)

– How the shells followed Mesolithic and Neolithic human populations in western France? (Catherine Dupont)

– Quantifying coastal exposure – Applying viewshed and fetch analysis to locational patterns in the Norwegian Mesolithic (Isak Roalkvam)

– Modelling human movement in coastal areas: a visibility and mobility network approach (Elias Lopez-Romero/P. Fabrega Alvarez)

13.30-16.30                Plenum discussion on planned projects within/across work packages, articles, planning of future meetings etc.

Participants: Jorge Calvo Gomez, Catherine Dupont, Grégor Marchand, Elias Lopez-Romero, Pablo Arias, Miriam Cubas Morera, Valdis Bērziņš, Mārcis Kalniņš, Inger Marie Berg-Hansen, Guro Fossum, Axel Mjærum, Svein Vatsvåg Nielsen, Isak Roalkvam, Almut Schülke, Steinar Solheim

Cite this blog post
Gregor Marchand (2020, January 10). Coast-inland mobility in hunter-gatherer societies. PrehCOAST. Retrieved June 13, 2024, from

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