The archeology of an African Desert
University of Namibia Press, February 2021
This is a story of human survival over the last one million years in the Namib Desert ― one of the most hostile environments on Earth.
The resilience and ingenuity of desert communities provides a vivid picture of our species’ response to climate change, and ancient strategies to counter ever-present risk. Dusty fragments of stone, pottery and bone tell a history of perpetual transition, of shifting and temporary states of balance. NAMIB digs beneath the usual evidence of archaeology to uncover a world of arcane rituals, of travelling rain-makers, of intricate social networks which maintained vital systems of negotiated access to scarce resources.
This is more than a work of scientific research; it is a love-song to the desert and its people.
John Kinahan is an independent Namibian scholar and has worked in the Namib Desert for more than 40 years. His research on the archaeology of this unique region, including collaborative projects with several academic institutions, has been widely published in southern Africa and internationally. He is Adjunct Professor of Archaeology at Arizona State University and a long-standing Honorary Research Fellow at the School of Geography, Archaeology and Environmental Studies, University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg.