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Reconstructing Late Pleistocene Human Behavior in the Jordan Rift Valley

The Middle Paleolithic stone tool assemblage from Ar Rasfa

Ghufran Sabri Ahmad and John J. Shea


Ar Rasfa is a Middle Paleolithic open-air site located in the Rift Valley of Northwest Jordan excavated between 1997-1999. This book presents a detailed technological, typological, and paleoanthropological analysis of the stone tool assemblage from Ar Rasfa. Artifacts reflecting the initial preparation and exploitation of local flint sources dominate the Ar Rasfa assemblage. Typologically, the assemblage is most similar to Levantine Mousterian assemblages such as those from Naamé, Skhul and Qafzeh. Patterns of lithic variability and contextual evidence suggest Ar Rasfa was visited intermittently by human populations circulating between lake/river-edge resources in the Rift Valley bottom and woodland habitats along the ridge of the Transjordan Plateau.