A very interesting new article of the Safi project has just appeared:
Fowler, K. D., Ross, J., Walker, E., Barritt-Clearly C., Greenfield, H. J., and Maeir, A. M.
2020 Fingerprint Evidence for the Division of Labour and Learning Pottery-Making at Early Bronze Age Tell Eṣ-Ṣâfi/Gath, Israel. PLoS One 15(4): e0231046.
In this study, spearheaded by Kent Fowler (Manitoba), which is a development and expansion of previous work, we studied 112 fingerprints on Early Bronze Age (EB) III pottery from the early urban neighbourhood in Area E at Tell es-Safi/Gath, in order to distinguish the age and sex of the potters. The analyses indicate that most fingerprints were made by adult and young males and the remainder by adult and young females. Children’s prints are in evidence but only occur on handles. Multiple prints of different age and sex on the same vessels suggest they were impressed during the training of young potters. Production appears dominated by adult and young males working alone, together, and in cooperation with adult and/or young females. Vessels with prints exclusively by females of any age are rare. This male dominant cooperative labor pattern contrasts recent studies showing that adult women primarily made Neolithic figurines in Anatolia, and more females than males were making pottery prior to the rise of city-states in northern Mesopotamia.
Check it out!