Within savanna and forest: A review of the Late Stone Age Kintampo Tradition, Ghana. Derek J. Watson. 2010. Azania: Archaeological Research in Africa, 45: 2, 141-174.

Contributed by: Kofi Nutor

This article is a synthesis of the available data and theoretical issues on the Kintampo Tradition (c. 3600-3200 BP) of Ghana. This tradition marked a period of intense socio-cultural complexity, after the era of hunter-gatherers, and is associated with the earliest manifestations of semi-sedentary ‘village’ settlements and food production, figurative art and personal adornment in the Late Stone Age (LSA) of the savanna-forest/forests of West Africa. The study provides a comparative analysis of material culture from various Kintampo sites including sites from Boase, Kintampo, Ntereso, Gambaga, Daboya, mumute and Bosumpra. Excavated remains of domestic and wild plants and animals, pottery, microliths, celts (Nyame Akuma) and rasps (terracottra cigars), were evaluated and discussed against the backdrop of prevailing palaeo-ecological conditions of the Late Stone Age. Watson recasts the Kintampo Tradition “as a distinctive and durable archaeological tradition that constitutes the beginnings of food production in Sub- Sahelian West Africa”.