Accepted Paper:

Monogenesis-bipolarization of milk culture in the Eurasian continent  


Masahiro Hirata (Obihiro University of Agriculture and Veterinary Medicine)

Paper short abstract:

This presentation presumes that milk culture originated in West Asia, and then the milk culture diffused and transformed in North and Central Asia under cool environmental condition. The hypothesis of monogenesis-polarization of milk culture can lead to the hypothesis of monogenesis of pastoralism.

Paper long abstract:

This presentation focuses on the origin and the diffusion of milk culture (milking, milk processing and uses of milk products) in the Eurasian Continent.

1) The invention of milking created a new strategy of food procurement: obtaining the benefit of milk keeping animals alive with no slaughter of living animals. It created a new subsistence of pastoralism.

2) Archaeological and anthropological surveys indicate that the milk culture originated firstly in West Asia, and then diffused over the Eurasian Continent. From the field study over 20 years, it became clear that the milk processing technique forms geographically the bipolar characteristics of northern region and southern region. It can be considered that the technique of West Asian fermented milk processing series developed in the southern region diffused to northern region.

3) This diffusion contributed also to the following technique of cream: separating series and alcohol fermentation in northern region under cool environmental condition. Here, the hypothesis of Monogenesis-Bipolarization of milk culture in the Eurasian Continent can be proposed.

4) The hypothesis indicates also that the pastoralism in North Asia and Central Asia were established secondarily because the milk culture makes the base of pastoral subsistence.

Panel P109
Afro-Eurasian inner dry land civilization