AASV7_2016 AASV: Palaeodemographic studies at Drimolen, South Africa, by Angeline Leece & Paleopathologies of Egyptian mummy heads by Stacey Gorski
Thursday, 20 October 2016 from 6:30 PM to 7:30 PM (AEDT)
Palaeodemographic studies at the hominin-bearing palaeocave site of Drimolen, South Africa presented by Angeline Leece
Palaeodemographic studies play an important role in the interpretation of extinct hominin species. All demographic studies are based on the concept of life-histories. Inspection of life-history characteristics provides information about the chronology and synchrony of growth, maturation, and aging milestones (i.e. age at weaning, age at first reproduction, interbirth interval, etc.). Examining these landmarks can help broaden our understanding of the behaviour of extinct taxa. A palaeodemographic interpretation of both theParanthropus robustus and early Homo populations within the Drimolen assemblage was established and used to hypothesis as to the accumulation processes of the material. It was found that the Drimolen P. robustusdemographic profile most closely resembled that of a carnivore accumulation while the Drimolen early Homo demographic profile most closely resembled that of a natural mortality accumulation.
Angeline completed her Bachelors of Anthropology Honours under the guidance of leading hominin researcher Professor David Strait. After having investigated the phylogeny of Australopithecus sediba at New York's SUNY Albany, Angeline moved to Australia to undertake her Masters research into Paranthropus robustus at La Trobe University. Angeline has worked at a number of early hominin sites in the South African UNESCO Cradle of Humankind and was lead author for the announcement and description of the first hominin remains from the site of Haasgat. Angeline's PhD research will focus on the adaptive, biomechanical, and phylogenetic implications of early hominin dentition.
Paleopathologies of Egyptian mummy head investigated using non-invasive imaging techniques presented by Stacey Gorski
A remarkable find of an ancient Egyptian mummified head in the Harry Brookes Allen Museum of Anatomy and Pathology at the University of Melbourne has led to an on-going multidisciplinary project involving non-destructive scanning and three-dimensional printing in order to develop a biological profile and report on the pathology of the individual, which will be the focus of this talk. An artistic facial reconstruction of the individual was also undertaken by a forensic sculptor. Using cranial morphological criteria and other forensic techniques, the sex and approximate age of the individual has been determined. Several pathologies were apparent from the CT-scans, and appear to be population-specific in line with certain maladies that the ancient Egyptians were known to suffer from. The presentation will also go on to discuss future directions of the research being undertaken and what other information we hope to gain by conducting these analyses.
Stacey Gorski has a Bachelor of Forensic Science from Bond University on the Gold Coast and moved to Melbourne in 2015 to pursue a Master of Biomedical Science degree based in the Department of Anatomy and Neuroscience at the University of Melbourne. She hopes to continue research in the fields of forensic anthropology and physical anthropology.
When & Where
Archaeological & Anthropological Society of Victoria (AASV)
The Archaeological and Anthropological Society of Victoria was formed in 1976 through the amalgamation of two societies, the Anthropological Society of Victoria and the Archaeological Society of Victoria. Although one was formed 30 years before the other both owed their origin to inspiring lectures given by singularly gifted academic lecturers to what were largely non-academic audiences. Both lecturers were on the staff of the University of Melbourne but stimulated the enthusiasm of people outside the university community.
The AASV welcomes members from all walks of life: professional archaeologists and anthropologists, students, and interested laypeople. We hold monthly meetings with free lectures covering a wide range of topics from the broad disciplines of archaeology and anthropology, and we offer a range of activities including fieldtrips and the opportunity to participate on archaeological digs. While the Pacific region has a special place in the work of the Society, lectures cover a wide range of topics and regions across the world. Links with the University of Melbourne, LaTrobe University and Monash are strong with both staff and students regularly speaking to the society about their work.