Aim of the ´One Year in Stone Age´ project (OYSA) is to answer various questions regarding Stone Age material culture, especially utility items, via long term reconstruction of use contexts through experimental archaeology. Goal is also to shed light on physical and psychological demands that Stone Age way of life put on humans, as well as to find out how this way of life affects people trying it today. Important part of the project is to answer questions related to Stone Age subsistence issues.
Project´s emphasis is on the research of Mesolithic Stone Age of Northern Europe, including Finland and its neighbouring countries. Project´s field period will be full 12 months, in order for the project team to gain experience on different seasons, and the benefits as well as restraints they most likely have had on Stone Age life. Project aims to execute the field period somewhere in Finland as one continuous field experiment. Other possibilities include northern Sweden or Russia.
Various carefully defined parts of the project are to be executed as standard experimental science, which requires extensive planning and preparation, as well as documentation during the field period. This means that the project staff can be roughly defined into two groups; those participating the field period as Stone Age volunteers, and everyone else. Due to obvious challenges the field period will create, the project will use various services of medical professionals.
The project must be able to adapt and even change if necessary its field goals and manner of execution, according to dynamic circumstances and changing science problems. The aim is however to ensure as continuous field period as possible, thus giving the volunteers necessary time and peace for everyday survival, as well as possibility to concentrate on important research and non-research issues of the day.
After the field period, project´s research staff and partners will analyze all the documentation. At this point, documentary film and book projects describing the endeavor will start. OYSA will aim to fund itself fully afterwards, through the sales of publishing and/or distribtion rights of the aforementioned documentary films and books. Research papers and scientific publications concerning the project are also produced at this point.
One Year in Stone Age project is now seeking project leadership, interested archaeologists and other scientists, documentarists, volunteers for the project´s field period, partners, and public as well as private funding.
Depending on the amount and timing of support the project will receive, earliest starting point for the project´s field period at this moment seems to be summer of 2012.
You can find OYSA also in Facebook, including information on how to apply for the project.