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Archaeological Cultures

Zoomorphic vessel, neolithic, Linear Pottery Culture, National Archaelogical Museum, Bratislava

1,194 words

In the attempt to understand who we are and where we came from, history takes us only so far. Once the written record thins and ends—not far back in time, evolutionarily speaking—we are left primarily with archaeological evidence and inferences from linguistics.

Prehistory is a world of few facts and much guesswork. In the early historical period, when archaeological evidence and spotty written records at least complement one another, existing knowledge is extended. But when the historical record ends completely and archaeologists take over, the situation becomes much more opaque.

The unit of prehistorical analysis is the “culture,” characterized by a defined range of material artifacts. Cultures may be named after particularly rich geographical sites, after unique artifacts, or after regions in which sites of a certain type frequently occur. For each culture a geographical distribution can be mapped and radiocarbon dating pinpoint an estimated date and duration. A series of prehistorical maps can be drawn showing sequences of cultures analogous to sequences of peoples and states on historical maps.

Therefore, cultures should be visualized both “horizontally” and “vertically.” The horizontal dimension is a culture’s geographic distribution, the vertical its development, persistence, and disappearance across time, as well as the sequential succession of different cultures.

Thus, cultural change in prehistoric Europe can be envisioned as a shifting mosaic of different cultures (white ethnic groups or “populations”) moving across the continental landscape in both time and space.

Kossinna’s Law

Gustav Kossinna

The term “culture” entered archaeology through 19th century German ethnography, where the Kultur of tribal groups and rural peasants was distinguished from the Zivilisation of urbanized peoples. Kultur was used by German ethnologists to designate the distinctive ways of life of a particular people or Volk.

The idea of archaeological cultures became central to the discipline in the 20th century thanks to the work of Gustaf Kossinna (1858–1931) of the University of Berlin, the most famous archaeologist in the German-speaking world of his day (he was also a linguist).

Kossinna perceived the archaeological record as a mosaic of clearly defined cultures (Kultur-Gruppen or culture groups) that were strongly associated with race. He was particularly interested in reconstructing the movements of direct prehistoric ancestors of Germans, Slavs, Celts and other Indo-European ethnic groups in order to trace the Aryan race to its homeland or Urheimat.

Kossinna developed the theory that regionally delimited ethnic groups can be defined by the material cultures identified by archaeologists. A unified set of archaeological artifacts, a culture, was the sign of a unified ethnicity: “Sharply defined archaeological cultural areas correspond unquestionably with the areas of particular people or tribes.”

This statement is known as “Kossinna’s law.” The only objection to it is the imputation of an invariable identity between archaeological cultures and ethnic or racial groups (populations). The science is more complicated than that.

Kossinna’s law applies best to Neolithic and subsequent eras. The advent of agriculture was accompanied by a population explosion—the Neolithic Demographic Transition. By contrast, in the earliest human era, the Paleolithic, distinct cultural groups and differences are less readily discernible in the archaeological record.

Kossinna’s ideas have made him anathema to guardians of the racial Zeitgeist. Symptomatic of the dumbing down of academia, he is invariably depicted as a proto-Nazi.

Unfortunately, Kossinna’s “academic racism” is warm tap water compared to the poisonous brew of any of the hundreds of professors of Jewish Studies, Holocaust Studies, “Whiteness Studies,” Asian Studies, African Studies, Native American Studies, and Latino Studies active in universities today. Kossinna and other white academics routinely vilified as “racists” are sorry contenders for the mantle. For real hate you must examine today’s academy.

The Linear Pottery Culture

Kossinna’s concept of archaeological culture was introduced into the English-speaking academy by Australian-born, English-descended Stalinist archaeologist V. Gordon Childe, who stated in The Danube in Prehistory (1929):

We find certain types of remains—pots, implements, ornaments, burial rites, house forms—constantly recurring together. Such a complex of regularly associated traits we shall term a “cultural group” or just a “culture.” We assume that such a complex is the material expression of what today would be called a people.

Noted for synthesizing archaeological data from a variety of sources, Childe was the first academic to construct a prehistory of the entire European continent (The Dawn of European Civilization, 1925). He also wrote The Aryans: A Study of Indo-European Origins (1926), a cause for discomfort among the politically correct today.

Examples of very early Neolithic cultures in Europe include the Starčevo-Kőrös-Criş culture (Serbia-Hungary-Romania) and the Karnavo culture of Bulgaria.

Extent of the Linear Pottery Culture

The first agrarian society in central and eastern Europe was the Linear Pottery culture (Linearbandkeramik, LBK), formerly known as the Danubian culture after V. Gordon Childe’s book. Starting around 5500 BC from the middle Danube (Bohemia, Moravia, Hungary) it expanded northward along the Rhine and the other rivers going north through the German and Polish plains toward the North Sea.

According to McEvedy’s hypothesis in 1967,

Given that the Danubians were a genuine people and remained so until provincial differences began to appear among them a millennium after they had expanded across central Europe, it is difficult to avoid the view that their movement created an Indo-European heartland which must be postulated for roughly this time and place on purely linguistic grounds. Therefore the Danubian culture represents the arrival and establishment of the Indo-Europeans in Central Europe. (Colin McEvedy, The Penguin Atlas of Ancient History, 9)

Limitations of the Culture Concept

By definition, a prehistory in racial and ethnic terms remains hypothetical. Despite its popularity as a means of organizing the archaeological record, a simple correlation between peoples and distinctive archaeological cultures is not always warranted.

Bowl, neolithic, Linear Pottery Culture, National Archaeological Museum, Bratislava

Nevertheless, as Colin McEvedy observed 45 years ago, “We are not so helpless in this matter as the puritans pretend.” And Indo-Europeanist archaeologist J. P. Mallory adds, “While one may deny the necessity of assuming an invariable one-to-one correlation between an archaeological [culture] and a linguistic entity, it is equally perverse to assume that there can be no correlation between the two.” (In Search of the Indo-Europeans: Language, Archaeology and Myth, 1989, 164. Emphasis added.)

It will likely soon be possible to make well-founded inferences about the genotypes of ancient populations from DNA analyses of human remains. To a limited extent this is already occurring.

It is perfectly acceptable to make reasonable predictions and assumptions about white prehistory based upon archaeological, linguistic, anthropological, and genetic evidence. Archaeologists and prehistorians formulate analogous hypotheses and assumptions about scores of matters all the time.

Bowl, neolithic, Linear Pottery Culture, National Archaeological Museum, Bratislava

What is not acceptable is to deny prehistoric evidence due to racist-ideological dogmas motivated by the determination that whites must and will be denied a sense of collective identity.

People so motivated are keenly aware that the development of identity among whites akin to that enjoyed by Jews and non-whites could derail the genocidal policies upon which contemporary politics and the culture war are predicated.


  1. Junghans
    Posted July 15, 2011 at 11:05 pm | Permalink

    An interesting and learned article, Andrew. Very few people in the ‘Anglo’ world know of Gustav Kossinna and his exceptional archaeological and historical work, Die Deutsche Vorgeschichte.

  2. MOB
    Posted July 16, 2011 at 3:28 am | Permalink

    By coincidence, in the early hours yesterday morning, I watched a film (The Passionate Friends) starring two favorites, Ann Todd (Seventh Veil) and Trevor Howard (Brief Encounter), during which, in a nostalgic moment, they recalled a line he had written long ago in a letter to her: “God gave to every people a cup, a cup of clay, and from this cup they drank their life.) He confessed he’d stolen it but didn’t give the source. I tracked it down and found it was from a Northern Paiute proverb. Looking further, I came across and saved this 1995 keynote address by anthropologist James Deetz entitled “Cultural Dimensions of Ethnicity in the Archaeological Record,”,

    He begins his address with this Ruth Benedict quote from Patterns of Culture:

    A chief of the Digger Indians, as the Californians call them, talked to me a great deal about the ways of his people in the old days. One day, without transition, he broke in upon his descriptions of grinding mesquite and preparing corn soup. “In the beginning,” he said, “God gave to every people a cup, a cup of clay, and from this cup they drank their life. They all dipped in the water,” he continued, “but their cups were different. Our cup is broken now. It has passed away.” Our Cup is Broken. Those things that had given significance to the life of his people, the domestic rituals of eating, the obligations of the economic system, the succession of ceremonials in the villages, possession in the bear dance, their standards of right and wrong — these were gone, and with them, the shape and meaning of their life.

    And he concludes thus:

    “So it is that we see in the leavings of different people in the past the shape of their cup of culture. And the critical question to be asked is this: Is the cup reasonably intact, or has it been fractured beyond mending? Or, has it been transformed into another kind of cup, one better suited to the circumstances at hand? We should not, on the other hand, be overly concerned only by the form of its handle, or only the designs which may have been inscribed upon it, for these are nothing more than individual attributes which, when combined, give the cup its distinct form. Culture is a totality, and it is that totality which we should strive to delineate and understand.”

    (P.S. The film ended badly for me; rich banker Claude Rains gets to keep the girl because she wasn’t liberated enough to go after what she really wanted.)

  3. Fourmyle of Ceres
    Posted July 16, 2011 at 9:30 am | Permalink

    Andrew Hamilton in blockquote:

    People so motivated are keenly aware that the development of identity among whites akin to that enjoyed by Jews and non-whites could derail the genocidal policies upon which contemporary politics and the culture war are predicated.

    The phrase that pays, for all of us:

    “….the genocidal policies upon which contemporary politics and the culture war are predicated.”

    People in OUR Racially Conscious Community have spent the last century saluting one false flag after another, barking up one wrong tree after another, chasing the (receding!) tail of The Enemy Of The Week. Like the Eloi in “1984,” we have been told this is The Enemy, that is The Enemy, all the while missing the same basic conception the Enemy uses to their advantage, in all times, in all places.

    One, the Enemy is anyone that opposes the fulfillment of our metapolitical goals.

    Period. Full stop. End of discussion.

    Two, their metapolitical goal is the genocide of the White Race.

    Most people who start to come to Our Side are put of by the (planted) useful idiots, who use the language and symbols of the Past to gain validation for themselves, mostly by gaining attention for themselves, as tales told of sound and fury, signifying impotence, both personally and politically.

    Our Enemies intend to destroy us, at the Racial level. They intend to commit genocide upon us. And, we have been discussing issues with these people, we have made the fatal error of being rational with the irrational. Given a chance, they will talk to us all day – we can’t Do Anything while we are talking to them – and then, they will follow us down a dark alley and slit our throats.

    THIS is the Prime Motivation that guides all of their thoughts, words and deeds – how to commit genocide on the White Race.

    My method of dealing with this, incidentally, is to see myself as an Ambassador from the future Northwest Republic. I dress better than I used to, and speak more diplomatically than I used to. This Is Not By Accident. It works. I don’t waste energy trying to convince people I am correct in my analysis of issues. This way, I avoid the whole “pearls before swine” thing, and enormous amounts of energy are freed up to do better.

    Genocide – that’s the strategic metapolitical goal they have for us, which determines all of their actions in dealing with us.

    Genocide – it’s THAT purposeful, than planned, and that serious.

    The easiest, first little baby step in fighting this, is to send money to counter-currents, regularly. It’s that simple, and that easy. If you aren’t willing to do that – the regularity counts (almost) as much as the amount – than you can see YOUR choices, YOUR values, in the VISA bill this month. What’s more important, battling the genocide of the Race, or… look at the VISA bill, and you tell me.

    Yes. It’s that serious.

    What’s In YOUR Future? Focus Northwest!

    • anon
      Posted July 19, 2011 at 7:45 am | Permalink

      Hey friend,
      I dislike your panhandling for NWR, but you have made a strong statement of principle here that I’ve quoted at MajorityRights. Bravo.

      • Fourmyle of Ceres
        Posted July 20, 2011 at 9:05 pm | Permalink


        Thank you.

        What’s In YOUR Future? Focus Northwest!

    • Jaego Scorzne
      Posted July 20, 2011 at 11:44 am | Permalink

      Yes I’ve noticed this principle. Feminists are willing to “dialogue” about abortion – as long as the abortion mills continue at full speed during the dialogue. Muslims are delighted to dialogue – as long as they continue to pour in. These groups know what Charlie doesn’t – that the dialogue means nothing since they are in power and we aren’t. Real discussion happens between equals.

      • Fourmyle of Ceres
        Posted July 20, 2011 at 9:34 pm | Permalink

        Jaego Scorzne in blockquote:

        These groups know what Charlie doesn’t – that the dialogue means nothing since they are in power and we aren’t. Real discussion happens between equals.

        Good points. The dialogue simply acts to reinforce our ineffectiveness, and ends up like so much of what passes for White Nationalist analysis – the complaining of those who see themselves as professional victims, and want the bad people to stop doing bad things.

        I’ve seen this often in political and economic commentary: “Let’s tell them what they are doing to us is wrong, so they can stop it.”

        Right. Like wolves give a damn what sheep have to say, as long as the sheep can’t Do Something about it. It’s useful for the wolves to “dialogue” with the sheep, so the sheep will demonstrate their total acquiescence in the power of the wolf. The wolves might as well wear shirts with their motto: “You complain, and we’ll decide.”

        Covington made a strong point: we will be allowed to do everything but organize politically along Racial lines. It’s true. They commit genocide against the White Race on all levels, at all times, and Charlie Brown not only doesn’t get it, he cheers it on! Next Sunday, he shows up at the field, ready to play football using Lucy’s Rulebook of Invisible Rules.

        The map is not the thing itself, and neither are the words we use, Yet, we ascribe power over our lives by words whose meaning IN PRACTICE we never dare consider. Softly, they become the foundations of (false) ideologies, trying to become false religions. We then serve our false Creations, and wonder why our lives are not wroking out the way we were “told” they would.

        It’s simple. Everything we have been taught is essentially a lie, designed to control us softly, with the Consensus Trance, and words linked to pictures which we use to define the words. ALL of this is intentional, and ALL of it has one overriding purpose – our Death, and their Conquest.

        I didn’t really consider this as a massive externally controlled process. I saw advertising and education atomistically, and not part of one greater Process. I even knew of the General Electric studies concerning the power of color television to shape Consciousness, but I kept it in isolation.

        My Red Pill Moment came when I saw a show put on by Britain’s Channel 4, called “The Heist.” Derren Brown showed how easy it was to manipulate ordinary people into stealing from armored car deliverymen. Apt metaphor for the WN Community, yes? I then caught on to Wordism in practice by reading Bob Whitaker’s sites. Wordism came from before widespread adoption of televison, much less color television. Merged with color television, the most effective social control tool joined with the public education indoctrination system to “suggest” the White Race commit suicide.

        It worked, until the Internet. Now, we can start to Do Something about it, and the place to start is sending money to support counter-currents.

        A personal note: from time to time, I will awaken late at night, and think about the world of 2050, the one my Posterity will inherit. As I do so, I got to my computer and review the demographic and economic studies, and see them all as part of a Plan designed with two Racial purposes; their Conquest, and our Defeat. This Plan has been running full title for more than a century, perhaps much longer than several centuries. I look at our high school and college graduates, the new Eloi, and realize the swamp can not be drained playing their Games, by their Rules. The only answer is as painfully shocking as how Eddie Willers felt at the end of “Atlas Shrugged,” realizing he has been horribly, horribly used by those he trusted.

        We will not be allowed to win, as long as we accept their conceptions as superior to our conceptions, our Analytical Models, our Mental Maps of the World in all dimensions. They must laugh at how easy it has been to commit genocide against us, and have us pay taxes to support the genocide.

        Ergo, the importance of the formulation of Master Sergeant Thomas James Ball’s Second Set of Books Principle, and the importance of the Northwest Republic as the temporal bridge to the metapolitical order.

        What’s In YOUR Future? Focus Northwest!

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