Abstract

[Excerpt] The multiple beginnings of this book are spread over nearly one half century, dating from only a few years after the initial archaeological and anthropological reconnaisances of the Pilbara region of Western Australia. Much earlier, of course, is the Indigenous Australians’ habitation of the area now known as the Dampier Archipelago, Burrup Peninsula and Murujuga. There are good reasons why we think that this initial occupation happened during the Pleistocene period and to have endured for tens of thousands of years, with land use and subsistence patterns adapting to the progressive inundation of the western coastal shelf. The evidence of this occupation is multi-facetted but its most evident and indeed spectacular component—and the one that most concerns us here—is the presence of the Dampier petroglyphs. There are probably hundreds of thousands of decorated rocks and many more individual and group images; they bear witness to the artistic endeavours of many generations. These images catch the attention of the visitor because when they were carved the original light colour of the rusty-weathered rock-faces was exposed; and because their diverse subject matter reveals much about the cultures and societies of those who carved them. It has been argued that the Dampier petroglyphs represent the most extensive and intensive example of ancient rock art and that they have cultural values of World Heritage significance. …

Please note: Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people should be aware that this publication may relate to religious beliefs, death, burial practices or initiation ceremonies and rites; or it may contain images or names of deceased persons or images that may be regarded as unsuitable for children.

 
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Bibliographic Data

Short Form
Ward, 2018. Tech. Rep. Aust. Mus., Online 27: 5–8
Author
Graeme K. Ward
Year
2018
Title
Petroglyphs of Dampier—preface. In Archaeology and Petroglyphs of Dampier (Western Australia), an Archaeological Investigation of Skew Valley and Gum Tree Valley, ed. Graeme K. Ward and Ken Mulvaney
Serial Title
Technical Reports of the Australian Museum online
Volume
27
Start Page
5
End Page
8
DOI
10.3853/j.1835-4211.27.2018.1686
Language
English
Date Published
19 December 2018
Cover Date
19 December 2018
ISSN
ISSN 1835-4211 (online)
Publisher
The Australian Museum
Place Published
Sydney, Australia
Subjects
ARCHAEOLOGY; ABORIGINES: AUSTRALIAN; ANTHROPOLOGY; ROCK ART
Digitized
19 December 2018
Available Online
19 December 2018
Reference Number
1686
EndNote
1686.enw
Title Page
1686.pdf
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Complete Work
1686_complete.pdf
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