Margins or Nodes? Dietary Adaptation Strategies and the Role of Inner Asian Mountain Communities in Prehistoric Food Globalization

30 July 2018

Over the past decade, archaeological research in Eurasia has demonstrated the antiquity of long-distance exchange, predating the Silk Roads by more than 3,000 years. Researchers have revealed the movements of goods, ideas, plants, animals, and people across great distances away from their centers of origin deep in prehistory.

The goal of the project in Kyrgyzstan is to determine the role played by the marginal highland landscapes of Central Asia in the prehistoric processes of food globalization in prehistory. We will approach this question by analysing human subsistence strategies in high altitude zones dated to the Bronze Age (ca. 2500 – 1500 BC), pinpointing the timings of domestic crop and animal arrival, and identifying human choice and selection between species.

  • For this study the Chap site (42°10'51.73; 75°51'3.64), located near Koch Kor city in Kyrgyzstan was chosen for summer excavation.
  • The excavations will take place between 1-15th of August, 2018.
  • The project is being run by Vilnius University (Lithuania) Giedre Motuzaite Matuzeviciute as PI, in collaboration with Turkish Manas University, responsible archaeologist being Kubatbek Shakievich Tabaldiev.
  • The core team consist of 15 archaeologists from Lithuania, France, USA, Germany, Kyrgyzstan, Kazakhstan and Russia.

The cultural heritage of Kyrgyzstan is of high importance and top priority, thus we are applying cutting edge scientific methodologies to research the archaeological site.

This research is funded by the European Social Fund according to the activity ‘Improvement of researchers’ qualification by implementing world-class R&D projects.
world heritage

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