What is a Burin? Typology, Technology, and Interregional Comparison

  • Silvia Tomáŝková


Classification of artifacts has long marked a significant edge between theory and practice in archaeology. While considering classification to be a necessary methodological device, most practitioners also recognize that it carries with it built-in assumptions. This essay approaches the issue by way of a specific stone tool type from Old World sites: the burin. By asking “what is a burin?” the study shows the need to reconsider typologies to reflect changes in research questions and progress in dating methods, especially when working with museum collections and secondary data between regions and across national traditions, and the need to study whole collections from the perspective of technological choices.


typological classification technology tool life history interregional comparisons 


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Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Curriculum in Women’s Studies and the Department of AnthropologyChapel Hill

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