2004 Denver Annual Meeting (November 7–10, 2004)

Paper No. 5
Presentation Time: 2:40 PM


SCHULDENREIN, Joseph, Geoarcheology Rsch Associates, 92 Main Street, Suite 207, Yonkers, NY 10701, geoarch@aol.com

This presentation synthesizes stratigraphic and human settlement records in the Jordan Rift Valley. It draws on several regional studies from the western portion of the Rift and more recent work to the east, in Jordan. The study recasts observations by a variety of researchers who have assembled geomorphic and human ecological data bases from the later Middle Pleistocene to the Holocene. A reinterpretation is offered for sequences in the wadi Hasa, the primary prehistoric drainage and settlement locus of west central Jordan. Cultural stratigraphies from the Middle Paleolithic through Neolithic and periods are considered. Prehistoric settlement constructs are assembled on the basis of relationships between cultural component, site size, topography, landform, and geomorphic process. Investigations from several key regions and excavations are viewed in basin wide context and then expanded to the regional (southern Levantine) scales. Models of dynamic landscape change afford comparisons with other regional efforts in Negev, Sinai, and greater Transjordan. Finally, a new evaluation of the Holocene landscape history is presented, centered on alluvial stratigraphy. Dates and soil development profiles facilitate comparisons of Jordanian terrace chronologies with those of the western Levant.