The highlands of Sumatra remain one of the most neglected regions of insular Southeast Asia in terms of history and archaeology. No comprehensive research program incorporating both a survey and excavations within a defined geographical or environmental zone has been carried out there since Van der Hoop (1932) conducted his study of the megaliths on the Pasemah plateau in the 1930s. Meanwhile, Van der Hoop’s investigations and several other archaeological research activities at places such as northwest Lampung (McKinnon 1993), Pasemah (Sukendar and Sukidjo 1983-84; Caldwell 1997; Kusumawati and Sukendar 2000), Kerinci (Laporan 1995a, 1996a), and the Minangkabau heartland (Miksic 1986, 1987, 2004) have placed special emphasis on the megalithic remains. As a result, the megaliths are by far the bestknown archaeological attraction of the Sumatran highlands.
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