Good books on Neanderthals have been a pleasing feature of the last few years; especially notable being The Neanderthals (Trinkhaus and Shipman 1994) and the prize-winning, In Search of the Neanderthals (Stringer and Gamble 1994). This book is different from both; firstly in its concentration on South-West France (the best studied but only one part of the Neanderthal world) and, secondly, in its emphasis on the behavioural, rather than anatomical or strictly technological, aspects of the Neanderthal. Beautifully written, and making full use of every archaeological source, this book adds much to our overall picture of Neanderthal society, particularly in showing how the material record (rich from 115,000 to 35,000 years ago) reflects changing behaviour. While he discusses them in detail, the author finally takes a middle way between the two extremes of theory which have developed on how similar to modern humans Neanderthals really were.
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