Book Spotlight

Rock Art and Memory in the Transmission of Cultural Knowledge

The book Rock ‘Art and Memory in the Transmission of Cultural Knowledge’ edited by Leslie F. Zubieta is finally out! Being the first compilation of works on this topic within a single book, it incorporates case studies of collaborations with indigenous populations as well as showcases memory’s relation to rock art research through a new lens.

This book shares timely and thought-provoking methodological and theoretical approaches from perspectives concerning landscape, gender, cognition, neural networks, material culture and ontology in order to comprehend rock art’s role in memorisation processes, collective memory, and the intergenerational circulation of knowledge. The case studies offered here stem from human experiences from around the globe—Africa, Australia, Europe, North and South America—, which reflects the authors’ diverse interpretative stances.

While some of the approaches deal with mnemonics, new digital technologies and statistical analysis, others examine performances, sensory engagement, language, and political disputes, giving the reader a comprehensive view of the myriad connections between memory studies and rock art. Indigenous interlocutors participate as collaborators and authors, creating space for Indigenous narratives of memory. These narratives merge with Western versions of past and recent memories in order to construct jointly novel inter-epistemic understandings of images made on rock. Each chapter demonstrates the commitment of rock art studies to strengthen and enrich the field by exploring how communities and cultures across time have perceived and entangled rock images with a broad range of material culture, nonhumans, people, emotions, performances, sounds and narratives. Such relations are pivotal to understanding the universe behind the intersections of memory and rock art and to generating future interdisciplinary collaborative studies.

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