American Flintknappers. Stone Age Art in the Age of by John C. Whittaker

By John C. Whittaker

Making arrowheads, blades, and different stone instruments was a survival ability and continues to be a craft practiced by way of hundreds of thousands of flintknappers worldwide. within the usa, knappers assemble at neighborhood "knap-ins" to socialise, trade principles and fabric, purchase and promote either gear and knapped paintings, and make stone instruments within the corporation of others. In among those gatherings, the knapping neighborhood remains hooked up via newsletters and the Internet.

In this ebook, avid knapper anthropologist John Whittaker bargains an insider's view of the knapping group. He explores why stone instruments allure smooth humans and what making them capacity to people who pursue this artwork. He describes how new individuals are integrated into the knapping neighborhood, how newbies examine the innovations of knapping and locate their roles in the team, how the neighborhood is based, and the way ethics, ideas, and ideology approximately knapping are constructed and transmitted. He additionally explains how the perform of knapping pertains to specialist archaeology, the exchange in sleek replicas of stone instruments, and the forgery of artifacts. Whittaker's e-book hence files a desirable way of life of yank lifestyles and introduces the broader public to an historic and nonetheless lucrative craft.

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Extra info for American Flintknappers. Stone Age Art in the Age of Computers

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Although artists or owners may be working on them or actively showing them off, the object, not the action, is the focus of the event. Knap-ins are very different: they are all about the act of knapping. Artifact shows, which are also common, make a good contrast. They are much more typical shows, displaying the same kind of objects made by knappers. They even involve some of the same people, but although there may be knappers knapping and displaying their work at some artifact shows, the event itself is structured around displaying objects, mostly prehistoric stone tools.

He did flintknapping and other demonstrations for the public, but points made by Ishi are rare. Moreover, as a skillful knapper attached to a tragic personal story of the destruction of Indian cultures, he is regarded as a sort of deity by knappers. At one knap-in where Charlie showed us his Ishi points, one knapper confided to me, only partly in jest, that after handling a point by Ishi he would now feel unable to wash his hands for a few days. Bringing the Ishi points to show other knappers was typical of Charlie.

Fortunately, an amateur archaeologist, Henry Hamilton, interviewed some of the looters after the destruction of the mound and collected as much information as possible on the finds, tracing them through chains of buyers (Hamilton ). Subsequent excavations of the remains of the site (Orr ; Brown a, b, ) and various analyses of artifacts from it (Bell ; Brown , , ; Phillips and Brown ) have recovered a lot of information, but also show how much was lost. While the site was being looted, amazing finds flooded the market and made quite a splash in the news and among collectors.

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