25 Jul 2023
by Meriem Amzal

The socio-economi life in the Tassili n'Ajjer region (Algeria) during the Holocene: A rock art perspective


Greetings! This is Meriem from Algeria; I hold a master’s degree in prehistoric archaeology and I’m currently a junior project manager. Today, I'm excited to share with you my research on the fascinating rock art found in the Central Sahara region, specifically in the Tassili n'Ajjer cultural park.

Poster overview

In my poster presentation, titled “The socio-economic life in the Tassili n'Ajjer region (Algeria) during the Holocene: A rock art perspective”, I delve into the connections between rock art and the archaeological record. By analysing rock art images from the pastoral period, I aimed to uncover glimpses of daily life and shed light on the transition to a neolithic lifestyle.

“The neolithic revolution” or “the neolithization” is defined by Gordon Childe (1892-1957) as the step that preceded the rise of civilisation and the phase of history in which humans started to control their food supply. In order to understand this economic transition from hunting-gathering to pastoralism in the Central Sahara, I first provide a brief overview of the context: how did the landscape evolve into the current desert, and what defines the neolithic of the Central Sahara in first place.

In my study, I focused on three key elements of neolithization: ceramics, domesticated plants, and domesticated animals. Ceramics, for example, played a significant role in this transition and the production of food. However, as I examined the correlation between the archaeological record and the pastoral rock art, I discovered the need for further research to fully understand this connection. The rock art in Tassili n'Ajjer serves as a testament to the remarkable cultural heritage of the region. By integrating the archaeological record with the insights gleaned from rock art, a more comprehensive understanding of the neolithization process in Tassili n'Ajjer can be achieved. Stay tuned!

Download the pdf of Meriem's poster below.

This poster was produced as part of the 2023 Student and Early Careers Conference coordinated by the CIfA Early Careers Special Interest Group and Council for British Archaeology.

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Meriem Amzal

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