Roman Bioarchaeology
Interdisciplinary Perspectives on Life and Death in the Roman World

Edited by Elizabeth A. Bews and Kathryn E. Marklein

Hardcover: $90.00
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Available for pre-order. This book will be available February, 2025
 

How bioarchaeology can illuminate the lived experiences of people in the Roman Empire  
 
“Highlights current Roman bioarchaeological research on a wide range of topics while outlining potential avenues for future research. This volume will certainly become a foundational piece that will inspire new questions, new approaches, and new collaborations.”—Creighton Avery, McMaster University  
 
“Covers a wide range of Roman bioarchaeological topics, ranging from childhood, sex and gender, mobility and genetic relatedness, and health and violence, to urban and rural divides. This book is a unique and meaningful contribution to both Roman and bioarchaeological research.”—Rebecca Gilmour, coeditor of Behaviour in Our Bones: How Human Behaviour Influences Skeletal Morphology  
 
Research on the Roman Empire has long focused on Rome’s legendary leaders, culture, and conquest. But at the empire’s peak, tens of millions of ordinary people coexisted in its territories—people who built the structures, wrote the literature, and transformed the landscapes we study today. In Roman Bioarchaeology, researchers use human skeletal remains recovered from throughout the Roman world to portray how individuals lived and died, spanning the empire’s vast geography and 1,000 years of ancient history.            
 
This volume brings together scholarship from archaeological sites in Europe, the Eastern Mediterranean, and Africa, featuring new and advanced scientific approaches including DNA studies, stable isotope analysis, paleoparasitology, paleopathology, biodistance, and more. Throughout, contributors prioritize the ethical treatment of the deceased by highlighting individual narratives and working with local descendants where possible. From rural homes in Britannia to bustling cities in Phoenicia, these essays showcase the diversity of Roman lives and illuminate the experiences of the most vulnerable in these societies. This book demonstrates how bioarchaeology can enrich our understanding of many facets of life in the Roman world.  
 
Elizabeth A. Bews is a doctoral candidate in anthropology at the University of South Florida. Kathryn E. Marklein is assistant professor of anthropology at the University of Louisville.  
 
A volume in the series Bioarchaeological Interpretations of the Human Past: Local, Regional, and Global Perspectives, edited by Clark Spencer Larsen

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