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Christopher David Czaplicki

In: 21st Century Anthropology: A Reference Handbook

Chapter 33: Paleopathology and Anthropology

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Paleopathology and Anthropology
Paleopathology and anthropology

Paleopathology, an application of biological anthropology, offers us an interesting perspective into the lives of the ancients. When skeletal remains are all that are left from many ancient civilizations, paleopathologists rely on strict skeletal analysis to offer insight into ancient civilizations. Combining scientific inquiry with educated reasoning can give anthropologists an idea of the daily activities of individuals; their diet, health, and environment; and even more, specifically, the cause of death of each individual. This can offer anthropologists insight not only into the prevalence and evolution of a disease in a past civilization but also into what trends to expect from the same or similar diseases today. While paleopathology can focus on more recent cases from a forensic anthropological standpoint, ...

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