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SEMINAR: ARCHAEOLOGY SEMINAR SERIES

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Today's date is Saturday, October 31, 2020
ARCHAEOLOGY SEMINAR SERIES : “Cannibalism is bad”. Isn’t it? Other events...
It is a truth universally acknowledged that eating people is wrong. Arens (1979) thinks it is so wrong that no-one every really did it. When we consider the historical, ethnographic and archaeological records, it is clear that people did indeed do it. Again despite Arens, who argues that since there’s really no such thing as cannibalism there’s no point in categorising it, there are different forms of cannibalism, some perhaps considered more benign, or any way less malign, than others. Examples might be survival cannibalism and mortuary cannibalism. In this paper I want to consider problems of definition and categorisation, glance at the ethnographic and historical sources, then survey the archaeological record in particular to look at the human history of this activity in deep time. I am interested not in whether cannibalism ever existed, when it is quite clear to me and many others that it did, but if there were ever societies in which it was not considered out and out “bad”, but was indeed a normative practice, and whether such cases have discernible similar cultural parameters. I will also consider some possible evolutionary implications of eating people.
Speaker(s) Sandra Bowdler
Location .Social Sciences Lecture Room 1 (G28)
Contact Karen Eichorn <[email protected]> : 64887249
Start Thu, 21 Mar 2013 16:00
End Thu, 21 Mar 2013 17:00
Submitted by Karen Eichorn <[email protected]>
Last Updated Wed, 20 Mar 2013 10:34
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