Media Coverage

Media coverage of work done by Anthropology department’s faculty members

Ground Penetrating Radar Project by Peter Leach


Peter Leach
(Photo: Jerrey Roberts/Gazettenet)

Ground-penetrating radar used to prepare for archaeological dig at Amherst Historical Museum

AMHERST — A high-altitude Peruvian rock shelter, Mayan ruins and caves in France are among the sites around the world where a three-wheeled device resembling an oversized tricycle has revealed what lurks below the ground’s surface.
While the lawn of the Amherst Historical Museum on Amity Street may not be the most unusual place that Peter Leach has brought his ground-penetrating radar, it was where the doctoral student in anthropology at the University of Connecticut spent his day on Monday. “The idea is to use this to figure out how the entire property is laid out, slicing back through time,” Leach said. Making 50-centimeter-wide swaths over much of the ¾-acre property, Leach began the process of discovering what might be hidden up to 6 feet underground, without the need to put any shovels in the lawns and gardens surrounding the mid-18th-century building…


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Interview with Françoise Dussart about Australian indigenous art

Lifelines: Indigenous Contemporary Art from Australia
You are warmly invited to the exhibition about contemporary art in Australia called Lifelines at Musée de la civilisation. Lifelines abounds in life and color, its close to 100 works specially selected by guest curator Professor Françoise Dussart of the University of Connecticut.

Natalie Munro’s lab in UConn Today

UCONN Today published a report about Natalie Munro’s laboratory at the UConn Anthropology department.

Munro in lab
A Bare Bones Approach to Understanding Human Behavior

The laboratory of UConn anthropologist Natalie Munro is a treasure trove of animal bones. She has assembled the collection for teaching students how to identify everything from the species and age of the animal to how it died. Diversity of specimens is critical for that education, and Munro has been creative about amassing a rich collection. Interspersed between the bleached remains of animals tens of thousands of years old from distant digs are newer specimens from closer to home – roadkill both collected and donated…

A recent discovery by UConn Anthro covered by UCONN Today

UCONN Today covered a recent finding of a 12,000 years old stone tool in Mashantucket Pequot Reservation by UConn faculty and graduate students.

field school
Piecing Together a 12,000 Year-old Way of Life

About 12,000 years ago, when ice sheets in the Northern Hemisphere had almost finished melting and the last ice age was coming to an end, a group of Paleoindians camped along the edges of what today is the Great Cedar Swamp at the center of the Mashantucket Pequot Reservation. Expert flint knappers or makers of stone tools, these early New Englanders left a treasure trove of history buried in the ground. Hundreds of their artifacts have recently been uncovered through archaeological excavation, a joint venture of the Mashantucket Pequot Museum and Research Center and the University of Connecticut….

Coverage of Lang et al. work in UCONN Today

UCONN Today covered a recent publication on anxiety and ritualization published in Current Biology by Martin Lang and Dimitris Xygalatas.

cleaning task copy
Rinse and repeat to remove anxiety

The study found stress can result in action that could help as a coping strategy to reduce anxiety, a determination that may lead to a better understanding of psychiatric disorders such as obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD) and autism spectrum disorders.
Advances in motion sensing technology offered researchers a new way to test for a link between ritual and anxiety. Although the link has been theorized for many years in social science research, the study is the first hard evidence of a relationship between the two, according to Martin Lang, a doctoral candidate in anthropology at UConn who led the study….

12000 year old artifacts found on Mashantucket Pequot reservation

University of Connecticut’s archaeological field school and Mashuntucket Pequot Museum and Research Center on the Mashuntucket Pequot Reservation discovered 12 000 years old artifacts, making it one of the oldest discoveries in New England. You can watch a video podcast and read more about this discovery in this article on WTNH News 8 or on FOXCT.

12,000-year-old artifacts found on Mashantucket Pequot Reservation

Artifacts more than 12,000-years old have been discovered in Connecticut on the Mashantucket Pequot Reservation, making for one of the oldest discoveries in New England. “It’s one of the oldest sites in Connecticut and now the oldest site on the Mashantucket Pequot Reservation,” said archaeologist Zac Singer, who studies stone tools and the pattern in the stone breakage. “We’re getting a glimpse into some of the first people who were occupying New England at the end of the last ice age.”

Coverage of Sarah Sportman’s work on prison archaeology

Megan Gannon from Atlas Obscura covers work of UConn Anthropology graduate Sarah Sportman:

Old prison
Starving Felons, and Other Lessons from Prison Archaeology

William Stuart didn’t really mind sleeping 50 feet underground in a dank abandoned mine or being in close quarters with felons—the ticks and fleas were fewer in the subterranean world and the temperature stayed fairly cool and constant. But what he hated about life at Old Newgate Prison was the food, or lack thereof….

Alexia Smith wins the Life Raft Debate

Life Raft Debate

The Earth is ruined, and there’s one seat left on a spaceship leaving to colonize another planet. Faculty experts debated, and a panel of judges – together with the audience – decided the winner. UConn anthropologist Alexia Smith won the contest by arguing: “an anthropologist, of course…”

See her award winning presentation here:

See the whole debate here: