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The Archaeology of Death and Commemoration - 40 credits (HST927)

This module examines the evidence for the treatment and disposal of the dead from the Neolithic to the Medieval periods in Europe and beyond. The commemoration of the dead and how the living maintained relationships with the dead are also important themes in this survey of mortuary and funerary practices over more than 4000 years of human history, and the module drawing on evidence from Britain, Europe, North Africa and Egypt. Practical issues relating to the excavation, analysis and interpretation of a wide range of material relating to death in the past are discussed, while anthropological studies of death in more recent societies, such as the Victorian ‘celebration’ of death and the Day of Dead in modern Mexico, are also explored. Seminars are led by archaeologists who are specialists in their fields, including Dr Jacqui Mulville, Prof. Alasdair Whittle, Prof. John Hines, Prof. James Whitley, Prof. Denys Pringle, Dr Paul Nicholson, Dr Alan Lane, Jane Henderson, Niall Sharples and Dr Peter Guest (module tutor).