The hunters of prehistory

It is common for men to hunt in primitive times. The men, not the women, who stayed in the caves … took care of the kids or something. However, the opposite is increasingly being confirmed. The roles were the same. The hunting women of prehistory confirm this.

Little was known about the hunters of prehistory. It
Little was known about the hunters of prehistory. It’s an opportunity to learn something new.
Stay in the heights

In 2018, American and Peruvian archaeologists excavated burials in the highlands of Peru. In one of the graves there were about twenty carved stones next to a poorly preserved body. Four of the artifacts were sharp points. There were also flint knives and other sharp objects. They also found ocher, which was used not only as a pigment but also to heal the skin. They were so close together that scientists believe they are in a backpack. A short distance away were the remains of tarucas (Andean deer) and vicuñas. The most noticeable thing came later. The remains came from a woman, a huntress.

The study’s lead author is Randy Haas of the University of California Davis. They found that the body was 8,008 years old, 16 years up or down. They think he is between 17 and 19 years old. But few references to the genre. They confirmed that it was a woman using sophisticated biomolecular engineering. It analyzes amelogenin, a protein found in tooth enamel. “It turns out that these proteins are linked to sex. And that’s why it is possible to estimate them with a high degree of precision, ”explains Haas. His work has just been published in the journal Advances in science.

It is important to know if he was a hunter or a hunter. The prevailing theory is that there was a distinct gender division of labor in ancient churches. Men hunted and women gathered. However, there is little evidence of this division of labor in the archaeological sites. The main evidence is awkward: in today’s human groups who are still hunter-gatherers, the male is the exclusive hunter.

Beat down the myth

Using this single jacket as a basis, Haas and his colleagues reviewed studies of 107 other burials. 27 of the buried lay next to their hunting weapons. And 11 of them were women. Projected, this would mean that more than a third of prehistoric hunters were actually hunters, at least in America.

This is the arsenal that was found in the grave of one of the huntress women.
This is the arsenal that was found in the grave of one of the huntress women.

“The theory of the human, the hunter, is not confirmed by archaeological data,” says Kathleen Sterling. She is an archaeologist at Binghamton University (USA). “Traditionally, hunting is considered more prestigious, demanding and dangerous than collecting. And these are traits that we stereotypically associated with male activities. “

“Big game like reindeer or bison did not depend on strength or skill, but on numbers. They pushed herds to cliffs, leaps or traps. They threw spears at the herds, which did not directly kill the animals, but wounded them. The people lived in small groups. All help was necessary ”.

The division of labor by gender is largely verified in traditional societies. Therefore, archaeologists assumed that it was widespread in the past as well. That was of little importance to the hunters of prehistory.

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