VESTNIK ARHEOLOGII ANTROPOLOGII I ETNOGRAFII ¹ 2 (57) (2022)
Vybornov A.A, Stavitsky V.V.
Controversial issues of the Eneolithic of the Middle Volga, Kama and Trans-Urals (op.: Nikitin V.V. Between the Stone and Metal Periods. Middle Volga Variation of the Volosovo Cultural and Historical Community. Yoshkar-Ola, 2017. 765 p. ISBN 978-5-906949-18-9)
The purpose of this paper is to analyze the controversial issues of studying the Eneolithic of the forest Volga Region, Prikamye, and Trans-Urals. The main results of the study of the early metal epoch of the Middle Volga Region, articulated in the monograph by V.V. Nikitin, are considered. The conclusions of the author of the monograph are based on a considerable source base. The materials were analyzed both by individual housing structures and by complexes. A more scrupulous analysis is devoted to the pottery items, as a priority in distinguishing the Eneolithic cultures. Stone industries are more prone to the territorial specifics associated with raw material resources. The sections of the book allow researchers of the adjacent territories to envision the cultural specificity of the Middle Volga antiquities against the background of the Eneolithic cultures of the Volga-Kama region. The monograph proposes to distinguish a special Maidan Culture within the Volosovo historical and cultural community. The paper touches upon the aspect of the relationship between the cultural area and community. Peculiarities of the origins of the Early Eneolithic cultures in the Upper Volga region, Prikamye, and Trans-Urals are observed. Local and foreign components are taken into account. General and specific chronological boundaries of the appearance and development in different territories are identified, and their reasons are explained. Attention is drawn to the fact that the complexes preceding the Volosovī or Ayat structures belong to the Late Neolithic or Early Eneolithic. The processes of intercultural interaction between the Trans-Urals and Cis-Urals cultures are recorded both in the transition period from the Neolithic to the Eneolithic and in the later period. The significant influence of the bearers of the forest-steppe zone cultures on the northern neighbors is ascertained. A more mosaic cultural diversity is recorded in the southern territories when compared with the cultures of the forest belt. The question of whether the Eneolithic inhabitants of this region practiced agriculture or stock rearing remains controversial. The least developed are the aspects related to both the social structure and the further fate of the tribes of the early metal epoch. Reconstructions of components of the spiritual culture of the Eneolithic population are highly hypothetical.
Keywords: Middle Volga forest region, Kama region, Trans-Ural region, Eneolithic, Volosovī Culture, Krasno-Mostovsky type, Shuvakish type.