Session: #475

Theme & Session Format

1. Widening horizons through human-environment interconnections
Session format:
Discussion session (with formal abstracts)

Title & Content

Human Bone and Tooth Artefacts in Hunter-Gatherer Contexts – Case Studies, Analyses, Interpretations and Theories
Excavations at prehistoric sites in Europe and elsewhere have revealed a rare but interesting phenomenon where human bones or teeth have been modified into artefacts and used as pendants, tools or weapons. In this session we focus on these practices, with the aim to investigate their distribution, variety and significance. The scope will be prehistoric and historic hunter-gatherer, pastoral and early farming groups from anywhere in the world and any chronological periods. We call for papers focusing on case studies with contextual and analytical descriptions of the finds, including manufacture and functional analyses and reconstructing object biographies. We would also wish to hear theoretical papers discussing the significance of such practices, for example, how these artefacts may reflect human-environment relationships (for example, similar type of artefacts made of human and other mammal bones), or, how they potentially reflect attitudes towards human remains and the dead. In order to approach these topics thoroughly we warmly welcome colleagues from all disciplines, for example archaeology, anthropology, ethnography, and natural history.
Human bone artefacts, Meanings of ornaments, Hunter-gatherers, Human-environment relationships, Ethnography, Object biographies
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Main organiser:
Kristiina Mannermaa (Finland) 1,2
Amy Gray Jones (United Kingdom) 3
Anna Malyutina (Russia) 4
1. University of Helsinki
2. University of Tartu
3. University of Chester
4. Institute for the history of material culture, St Petersburg