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2.2 Goals of the Meuse Valley Project

The research within the framework of the Meuse Valley Project is aimed at obtaining more insight into the course of the Neolithization process in the south of the Netherlands. This is realized in particular by gathering information about surface finds in the south-east of the Netherlands, using archives, data banks and depots with national and regional organizations, museums and individual (amateur) archaeologists. This information is used to complement our knowledge and help fill the spatial and chronological gap mentioned in 2.1.

In the Meuse Valley Project the economic changes in the transition from Mesolithic to Neolithic occupy centre stage. Although the Neolithization process certainly does not exist solely of changes in food production, it is an important element in the analysis of the surface finds in the Meuse Valley. With the available data we attempt to reconstruct the (food) economy for the various phases of the Mesolithic and Neolithic. By then comparing the various phases, the course of the Neolithization process is described in as much detail as possible.

Furthermore, ideas and hypotheses will be formulated about the causes that may be at the basis of the observed cultural changes. Technological, ecological and social causes should therefore be considered equally. Not only economic motives gave birth to a food-producing economy, but social motives like prestige and status might have played a much more important part.


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Last updated: Wed Feb 25 1998