, Volume 2, Issue 3, pp 221-253

From early humans to farmers and herders—Recent progress on key transitions in Southwest Asia

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Abstract

Archaeologists conducting research on the Pleistocene and early Holocene prehistory of Southwest Asia have made a formidable series of new discoveries and fresh insights since 1987. This article examines recent progress and shortcomings on a series of diachronic research topics, including the transition to modern humans, the development of late Pleistocene regionalism and territoriality, the advent of sedentism near the end of the Pleistocene, the origins of food production, and the initial ascendance of social complexity.