New Publication on the Archaeology of Dhofar

Persistent Pastoralism: Monuments and Settlements in the Archaeology of Dhofar – The Archaeological Heritage of Oman 10

by Joy McCorriston


A summary of archaeological teamwork along the Dhofar plateau and its backslope into the Nejd of Southern Oman, this book documents survey and excavation of small-scale stone monuments and pastoral settlements. Whether used as burial places, as landmarks, as mnemonic devices, or for other purposes, monuments are the enduring and prominent traces of desert pastoralists. In Dhofar, pastoralists constructed monuments in discrete pulses over 7500 years. Recognizing the dynamic ecosystems and climate regimes of Arabian prehistory, the author suggests that mobile pastoralists used monuments to link dispersed households into broader social communities. Furthermore, the range of practical adjustments to monuments as a consistent means of messaging among mobile people showcases the adaptive strength of Dhofar’s prehistoric inhabitants over time. A singular episode of settlement during a particularly arid period highlights the longer tradition of pastoral people on the move. With fictional vignettes to imagine the people who used these monuments, the chapters introduce archaeological analysis of the social identities, patterns of resource access, contacts, aversions, and exchanges with neighboring groups. Finally, the book underscores the rich heritage of persistent pastoralism within contemporary Oman.

other titles in this series

The First Peoples of Oman: Palaeolithic Archaeology of the Nejd Plateau – The Archaeological Heritage of Oman 5

by Jeffrey I. Rose, Yamandú H. Hilbert, Anthony E. Marks, Vitaly I. Usik

Dhofar Through the Ages: An Ecological, Archaeological and Historical Landscape – The Archaeological Heritage of Oman 1

by Lynne S. Newton, Juris Zarins