Do stone buildings equal to ‘advanced civilisation’?

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I’m not quite sure what a news story is trying to say when, after looking at remains from the past, they declare that the ancient people had a higher level of civilisation than previously thought. This story seems to suggest that since the ancient (well, not that since it’s dated to about 14-17th C) people at Kota Batu new how to construct buildings with stones, they were an ‘advanced civilisation’. It’s probably an oversimplication of the idea that monumental architecture equals complex societies equals ‘civilisation’ – but I’d argue that the reverse is not true. The absence of monumental architecture may not necessarily mean that that a complex societal structure or ‘civilisation’ existed.

Kota Batu artefacts, Bru Direct 20110120

Kota Batu Archaeological Site Tells Of Brunei’s Advanced Civilisation
Bru Direct, 20 January 2011
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Brunei to open archaeological park

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Brunei’s Department of Museums announces its intention to set up an archaeological park over the ancient capital of Brunei, Kota Batu. Recent archaeological works have revealed the presence of ceramics and the remains of defensive structures.

Artifacts from Kota Batu, Brunei. 28 November 2010, Brudirect.com

Old Kota Batu Gate, Other Artefacts Found
Brudirect.com, 28 November 2010

Archaeological Park To Open In Kota Batu
Brudirect.com, 28 November 2010

Archaeological Park to open in Kota Batu
Borneo Bulletin, 28 November 2010
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Documentary to highlight 1,000-year-old relations between Brunei and China

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A special documentary programme is being produced to showcase Brunei’s long history with China, through archaeological evidence from the 10th century Sungei Limau Manis site containing Song Dynasty artefacts, the shipwreck at Tanjung Simpang Mengkayauas well as the many ancient Chinese-Muslim graves in Brunei.

1,000 Years Of Brunei-China Ties To Be Documented
BruDirect, 21 May 2009

RTB To Film Documentary 7 On Brunei-China History
BruDirect, 21 May 2009
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