Dr Whittle reviews the latest archaeological evidence on Neolithic Europe
from 7000 to 2500 BC. Describing important areas, sites and problems, he
addresses the major themes that have engaged the attention of scholars: the
transition from a forager lifestyle; the rate and dynamics of change; and the
nature of Neolithic society. He challenges conventional views, arguing that
Neolithic society was rooted in the values and practices of its forager predecessors
right across the continent. The processes of settling down and
adopting farming were piecemeal and slow. Only gradually did new attitudes
emerge, to time and the past, to the sacred realms of ancestors and the dead,
to nature and to the concept of community.
Unique in its broad and up-to-date coverage of long-term processes of
change on a continental scale, this completely rewritten and revised version
of Whittle’s Neolithic Europe: A Survey reflects radical changes in the evidence
and in interpretive approaches over the past decade.