Session: #497

Theme & Session Format

5. Assembling archaeological theory and the archaeological sciences
Session format:
Regular session

Title & Content

What Do My Data Signify? How Can This Theory Be Supported? Interrogating Connections between Science and Theory in Funerary Archaeology
Theory is intangible without application to data and data are not easily interpreted without theory. This session highlights research within funerary archaeology interpreting treatment, study, and conceptions of the body which bridge the gap between archaeological science and theory. Goals of this session include highlighting and advancing a holistic, body-centric funerary archaeology and creating space for sustainable collaboration within our field.

We welcome papers with strong theoretical or scientific backgrounds and methodology from authors open to augmenting their work through collaboration. We encourage those already working with both scientific data or methods within theoretical frameworks to submit. We invite papers on theoretical concepts including sensory archaeology, ritual practice, embodiment, identity, lived experiences and biography, and digital and medical humanities. Scientific methodology including isotope analysis, aDNA, archaeothanatology, infrared spectroscopy, and osteology are all welcome. These themes are not exhaustive and we particularly welcome research that is innovative, collaborative, and open to future collaboration.

To adapt to the COVID-19 crisis and to benefit from the increasing accessibility that online conferencing allows, we ask that every submission culminates with a new research question to be provided ahead of the session, which the presenters cannot yet answer, but to which their research can contribute. During the session, the research questions will be discussed by the attendees to identify intersections in our work, to realize new future directions, and to seek out the skills and expertise required to answer them. Ultimately, these discussions can contribute towards the development of collaborative projects. We believe that academic thought and scientific innovation require diversity and inclusivity to progress and the session organizers will work to create an equitable and respectful environment that welcomes participation from all individuals.
funerary archaeology, archaeological theory, archaeological science, collaboration
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Main organiser:
Lisa Monetti (United Kingdom) 1
Liv Nilsson Stutz (Sweden) 2
Christophe Snoeck (Belgium) 3
1. UCL Institute of Archaeology
2. Linnaeus University
3. Vrije Universiteit Brussel