Posted by: Matthew Davies | July 18, 2014

Pan-African Archaeological Congress

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As part of the African Farming Network’s field workshop in South Africa, the network members also attended the congress of the Pan-African Archaeological Association and Society of Africanist Archaeologists meeting at Witts University Johannesburg. The network took centre stage in two consecutive congress sessions on the topic of African farming. The presentations were kicked off by an introduction to the network, its partner projects, and its field workshop meetings. This was followed by three papers on Marakwet including presentations by Timothy Kipkeu Kipruto, Freda M’Mbogori, Matt Davies and Anna Schoemaker. The presentations dealt with the Marakwet research team and community research methods, the Marakwet agricultural landscape and its development, and Marakwet archaeobotany and crop processing.

The Marakwet papers were followed by four papers on Bokoni by Alex Schoeman, Mats Widgren, Tim Maggs and Tanya Hattingh. The papers covered Bokoni archaeology and homestead evolution, Bokoni landscape, terracing and possible social structure, and archaeobotany and phytolith analysis.

The final network paper was due to be presented by Bayo Folorunso and Emuobosa Orijemie on the potential for studying Tiv Farming. However, bizzare South African visa regulations prevented Bayo and Emuobosa from attending the conference and consequently Matt Davies had to prevent their paper on their behalf.

Abstracts of the papers presented can be found here. 

Despite this minor set back, the conference was a great success and a wonderful opportunity to present the network to the broader academic community. We are extremely pleased that the conference sessions were so well attended and by the very positive feedback we were given.

We look forward to the next meeting!

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