Into the Maquis
Methodological and Interpretational Challenges in Surveying La Balagne, Northwest Corsica
Keywords:La Balagne, Corsica, Landscape archaeology, survey, western Mediterranean
Although Corsica is the fourth largest island in the Mediterranean, its archaeology is internationally less well known than that of many smaller Mediterranean islands. La Balagne Landscape Project (LBLP) was initiated to redress this situation but also, for the first time in Corsica, to undertake a surface survey in order systematically to recover and record archaeological features and materials over an extensive area. La Balagne in northwestern Corsica was chosen as the region of study because of its recent history of archaeological excavation and find spot documentation. During the course of three survey field seasons in 2006–2008, elements of seven communes (administrative districts) were surveyed and a total of 89 temporally distinct ‘evidence zones’ (e-zones) were discovered. The data collected by the LBLP to date suggest significant differences in the locus of settlements over time, but little change to the landscape. The coastal and near coastal zone has been the focus for habitation from the Early Neolithic onwards, but the interior was not extensively exploited until the recent past.
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