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Talk: Biocultural Practices during the Transition to History at the Vat Komnou Cemetery, Angkor Borei, Cambodia

October 26, 2017 @ 3:00 PM - 4:00 PM

In the Fall 2017 semester, the UHM Department of Anthropology will be offering a colloquia series. Each will be held Thursday at 3:00PM in Crawford Hall 115 on the scheduled date unless otherwise noted. Reception to follow talks scheduled for Crawford Hall.

This talk is co-sponsored by the Center for Southeast Asian Studies.

About the Talk

Mainland Southeast Asia underwent dramatic changes after the mid-first millennium B.C.E., as its populations embraced new metallurgical and agricultural technologies. Southeast Asians transformed their physical and social environments further through their participation in international maritime trade networks. Early state formation characterized much of the mainland by the mid-first millennium C.E. We examined a protohistoric (200 B.C.E to 200 C.E.) skeletal sample from the Vat Komnou cemetery at Angkor Borei in the Mekong delta (southern Cambodia) to understand the health impacts of this changing environment. Degenerative joint disease patterns indicate a distinct sexual division of labor. Although intentional dental filing was practiced, its impact on oral-dental health could not be determined. Dental pathologies suggest a mixed diet with more fibrous foods and a lower reliance on soft, processed agricultural foods. A broad-spectrum diet and varied use of the local environment is inferred from the faunal evidence. Stable isotope ratios indicate a relatively greater reliance on fish and estuarine dietary resources than on terrestrial protein. Affinities with other groups in the region are suggested by the cultural practices of the relatively tall, healthy inhabitants from Vat Komnou.

About the Speakers

Rona M. Ikehara-Quebral is Senior Bioarchaeologist at International Archaeological Research Institute, Inc., Honolulu. Miriam T. Stark is Professor of Anthropology at the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa, Honolulu. William Belcher is Assistant Professor of Historic Archaeology at the University of Hawaiʻi at West Oʻahu, Kapolei. Voeun Vuthy is Director of Archaeology at the Ministry of Culture and Fine Arts, Phnom Penh, Cambodia. John Krigbaum is Associate Professor of Anthropology at the University of Florida, Gainesville. R. Alexander Bentley is Professor of Anthropology at the Department of Comparative Cultural Studies, the University of Houston. Michele Toomay Douglas is affiliate graduate faculty at the Department of Anthropology, University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa, Honolulu. Michael Pietrusewsky is Professor Emeritus at the Department of Anthropology, University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa, Honolulu.


October 26, 2017
3:00 PM - 4:00 PM
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