Dr. Merrill Singer, professor of anthropology at UCONN, has partnered with Family Life Education to study the impact of climate change on low-income residents of Hartford and their awareness and understanding of climate change. The study, which was recently published in the journal Medical Anthropology, has been featured on UCONN Today.
Dr. Batchvarov Kroum, a professor of anthropology at UCONN and an underwater archaeologist, is co-director of a project that has unearthed a world of shipwrecks in the Black Sea. The ships date from the Byzantine and Ottoman empires to 19th century. This project’s impressive finds was recently featured in the New York Times.
Nathan Wales, a recent alumnus of UCONN’s Department of Anthropology, is an ancient DNA specialist whose research was recently featured on the BBC. A postdoctoral fellow at the University of Copenhagen, Dr. Wales’ research uses DNA to study the origins and spread of domestic corn.
Jackie Meier, a Ph.D. Candidate at UCONN’s Department of Anthropology, is the lead author on a PLoS One Paper entitled Provisioning the Ritual Neolithic Site of Kfar HaHoresh, Israel at the Dawn of Animal Management.
Abstract of the Paper:
“It is widely agreed that a pivotal shift from wild animal hunting to herd animal management, at least of goats, began in the southern Levant by the Middle Pre-Pottery Neolithic B period (10,000–9,500 cal. BP) when evidence of ritual activities flourished in the region. As our knowledge of this critical change grows, sites that represent different functions and multiple time periods are needed to refine the timing, pace and character of changing human-animal relationships within the geographically variable southern Levant. In particular, we investigate how a ritual site was provisioned with animals at the time when herd management first began in the region. We utilize fauna from the 2010–2012 excavations at the mortuary site of Kfar HaHoresh—the longest continuous Pre-Pottery Neolithic B faunal sequence in the south Levantine Mediterranean Hills (Early–Late periods, 10,600–8,700 cal. BP). We investigate the trade-off between wild and domestic progenitor taxa and classic demographic indicators of management to detect changes in hunted animal selection and control over herd animal movement and reproduction. We find that ungulate selection at Kfar HaHoresh differs from neighboring sites, although changes in dietary breadth, herd demographics and body-size data fit the regional pattern of emerging management. Notably, wild ungulates including aurochs and gazelle are preferentially selected to provision Kfar HaHoresh in the PPNB, despite evidence that goat management was underway in the Mediterranean Hills. The preference for wild animals at this important site likely reflects their symbolic significance in ritual and mortuary practice.”