par Nikis, Nicolas ;Kneale, Catherine;Martinón-Torres, Marcos;Lane, Paul J.;Livingstone Smith, Alexandre
Référence Society of Africanist Archaeologists (SAfA). 25th Biennial Meeting (21-24/08/2021: University of Oxford)
Publication Non publié, 2021-08-24
Communication à un colloque
Résumé : Long-distance and regional trade routes have played a major role in the sociopolitical history of Central Africa throughout the 2nd millennium CE, but largely remain understudied. In the late 19th century in West Central Africa, exchange was organised through a complex set of networks, intermingling local, regional and long-distance trade. Copper and brass, as valuable metal, were commonly exchanged items in those networks and as such offer an opportunity to better understand the flow of goods and how those networks operated, both at a local and a regional level. By combining several lines of evidence – historical and anthropological sources, distribution of objects and exploratory pXRF analyses of copper and copper alloys – this paper will outline the role in exchange and the circulation of copper and brass along the Congo River and some of its tributaries in the late 19th century. It will also highlight to what extent these 19th-century case studies could contribute to more robust analytical and theoretical frameworks for interpreting exchange evidence in earlier centuries in Central Africa.