Helen Gilmore

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Supervisors: Cyril Schafer (Anthropology and Archaeology), Sian Halcrow (Anatomy)

Title of thesis: A comparative ethnographic study of bioarchaeological practices in Aotearoa New Zealand and the United Kingdom.

Synopsis:

My academic background is in biological and cultural anthropology, archaeology and history, and my PhD is jointly supervised by the departments of Anatomy and Anthropology. My research project is a comparative ethnographic study of bioarchaeological practices in New Zealand and the United Kingdom, investigating the extent to which approaches and attitudes to engagement with archaeological human remains are shaped by differing cultural backgrounds and socio-cultural understandings. In particular, I am focussing on issues that frequently appear in current literature as ongoing debates:

  • Responsibilities of archaeologists to science, cultural communities and the general public
  • Cultural, political and ethical dimensions to bioarchaeological practice
  • Repatriation and/or reburial
  • Curation and public display of human remains