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Programme collectif de recherche "Réseau de lithothèques en Centre - Val-de-Loire". Rapport d’activité 2020

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Depuis 2016, le PCR « Réseau de lithothèques en région Centre - Val de Loire » (PCR CVDL) s’inscrit dans une perspective longue de recherche sur les modes d’exploitation des ressources lithiques et sur la territorialité des groupes humains préhistoriques. Outre l’étude ou la révision de séries archéologiques de l’espace régional, la caractérisation précise des silicites (silex, chert, silcrète, jaspéroïde) dans leur contexte géologique revêt une importance toute particulière en ce qu’elle permet de dessiner des espaces parcourus (parfois sur de très grandes étendues) et, couplée à la technologie lithique, d’identifier des modes de transport des artefacts. Ces réalités renseignent sur les formes sociales et les régimes de mobilité des groupes humains, permettant de matérialiser des processus d’interaction qui mettent parfois en jeu des entités culturelles perçues comme distinctes.
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In the wake of the discovery of numerous large blade workshops at Le Grand-Pressigny site (Indre-et-Loire, France), which initially aroused great interest, the mid-Loire Valley region became central to studies of flint diffusion. Despite the quality of the initial work, the widely shared view now is that the capacity for this concept to continue to provide useful archaeological modelling has diminished. Establishing real and actual correlations between archaeological objects and geological samples remains difficult, making it almost impossible to determine the source of certain materials represented in an archaeological series. In response to this problem, the French collective research project "Réseau de lithothèque en région Centre-Val de Loire" assembled about 30 amateur and professional researchers from various European institutions to work on three strategic missions: Mission 1: establish a list of current lithotheques (“rock-libraries” or comparative collections), verify their contents and complete them if necessary; Mission 2: link the major types of depositional environments with the properties acquired by flint through its life; Mission 3: spread knowledge and information both within the project and to all interested persons. The project is closely associated with similar French programs already in place in Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes and Aquitaine regions. The ultimate objective is to build a national and international community around a common project, bringing participants together regularly to share knowledge and technical expertise.
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