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Burials, body parts and bones in the earlier Upper Palaeolithic

The rich earlier Mid Upper Palaeolithic (Pavlovian) sites of Dolní Vĕstonice I and II and Pavlov I (∼32,000–∼30,000 cal BP) in southern Moravia (Czech Republic) have yielded a series of human burials, isolated pairs of extremities and isolated bones and teeth. The burials occurred within and adjacent to the remains of structures (‘huts’), among domestic debris. Two of them were adjacent to mammoth bone dumps, but none of them was directly associated with areas of apparent discard (or garbage). The isolated pairs and bones/teeth were haphazardly scattered through the occupation areas, many of them mixed with the small to medium-sized faunal remains, from which many were identified post-excavation. It is therefore difficult to establish a pattern of disposal of the human remains with respect to the abundant evidence for site structure at these Upper Palaeolithic sites. At the same time, each form of human preservation raises questions about the differential mortuary behaviours, and hence social dynamics, of these foraging populations and how we interpret them through an archaeological lens.

Human Remains and Violence: An Interdisciplinary Journal

strategy that we know from archaeological and ethnographic research has existed in this region since the first millennium BC.3 A full repertoire of violent pre-Columbian practices that included scalping, displaying severed heads (as trophies), cannibalism, and the dismemberment of bodies has been recorded in research from the field of prehistory4 and from ethnographic studies of the eighteenth through to the twentieth century.5 Significant levels of violence and social conflict emerged among the pre- and proto-historic peoples living in the lowlands of eastern Uruguay

in Human remains and identification
The forensic and political lives of secondary mass graves in Bosnia and Herzegovina

. 241231). 1 B. Latour, Reassembling the Social: An Introduction to Actor Network Theory (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2005). 2 Ibid., p. 5. Secondary mass graves in Bosnia and Herzegovina   165 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 B. Latour, Pandora’s Hope: Essays on the Reality of Science Studies (Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 1999). A. Mant, ‘Knowledge acquired from post-war exhumations’, in A. Boddington, A.  N. Garland & R.  C. Janaway (eds), Death, Decay and Reconstruction: Approaches to Archaeology and Forensic Science

in Human remains and identification
Thinking with data science, creating data studies – an interview with Joseph Dumit

. DN: How did Data Studies become an interest of yours? JD: The immediate genesis was meeting with an alumnus, Tim McCarthy, who had been a social science major and went on to work in senior positions at a series of international banks and financial institutions. He was concerned that Liberal arts majors were declining, even though it was the critical thinking skills of the liberal arts that were incredibly valuable in his career. He was concerned that, when he was starting out, companies hired liberal arts majors and then trained them for one to two years. But today

in Ethnography for a data-saturated world
Challenges and technological solutions to the ­identification of individuals in mass grave scenarios in the modern context

-genocide and mass violence contexts presents a particularly pressing aim for the twenty-first century. The interest in this work stems from a number of different sources. From an academic perspective this may include legal scholars, forensic archaeologists and anthropologists, historians, sociologists, and so on. This chapter is an example of such academic interest. From a social perspective this may include those directly affected by the violent and traumatic events that require investigating, or those with the responsibility to scrutinize such events. This chapter will

in Human remains and identification
Mass graves in post-war Malaysia

Japan’s historical amnesia’, New Straits Times, 18 February 2009, 24. M. Z. Rosensaft, ‘The mass-graves of Bergen-Belsen: focus for confrontation’, Jewish Social Studies, 41:2 (1979), 155–86; I. Paperno, ‘Exhuming the bodies of Soviet terror’, Representations, 75:1 (2001), 89–118; M. Elkin, ‘Opening Franco’s graves’, Archaeology, 59:5 (2006), 38–43. The term ‘sectional narrative’ emphasizes that these narratives are not entirely absent from public discourse but are suppressed as they are incompatible with existing parameters of official memory; T. Ashplant, G. Dawson

in Human remains and identification
Open Access (free)
The tales destruction tells

the flesh, and then of the bones, as a result of a combination of biological and chemical processes influenced by a wide variety of factors, such as climatic conditions, the nature of the ambient environment, or human intervention.4 Of course, the countless cultures and religions, small or great, have always treated bodies according to special rituals, the product of socio-cultural contexts but also of continual historical developments. One might even say that social anthropology, as a DHR.indb 1 5/15/2014 12:51:03 PM 2  Élisabeth Anstett & Jean-Marc Dreyfus

in Destruction and human remains

9 An anthropological approach to human remains from the gulags Élisabeth Anstett We owe respect to the living To the dead we owe only the truth. (Voltaire) Introduction Archaeologists and anthropologists specializing in the field of funerary customs have long been used to considering the degree of social, religious and political investment placed in the dead body. Ever since the pioneering work of Robert Hertz, we have known that the social treatment of corpses is based on a series of rituals that bring into play the full range of collective representations

in Human remains and mass violence
Open Access (free)
A war of extermination, grave looting, and culture wars in the American West

1 Bitter legacies: a war of extermination, grave looting, and culture wars in the American West1 Tony Platt And so they are ever returning to us, the dead. (W. G. Sebald, 1993) I don’t think we ought to focus on the past. (Ronald Reagan, Bitburg Cemetery, 1985) Let not your sorrow die, though I am dead. (Shakespeare, Titus Andronicus) In 2012, the ‘Corpses of mass violence and genocide’ annual conference turned a critical eye on agents of injustice and asked, what do practices of mass destruction tell us about larger political, social, and cultural issues

in Human remains and identification
Open Access (free)
Why exhume? Why identify?

search for bodies and their identification  – has traditionally remained in the hands of forensic science and has so far only marginally attracted the interest of history, social anthropology, or law despite the magnitude of their respective fields of application. In this context, one of the primary contributions of this volume is to connect the social and forensic sciences, for the first time, in a joint and comparative analysis of how societies engage in the process of searching for and identifying the 2   Élisabeth Anstett and Jean-Marc Dreyfus corpses produced by

in Human remains and identification