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Four-Field Forensic Archaeology

  • Derek CongramEmail author
Chapter

Abstract

Despite only about 40 years having passed since the first academic publications advocating the use of archaeological techniques and methodologies toward forensic investigation, forensic archaeology has evolved and taken many forms. Conventional archaeology – and physical anthropology, which, especially in the forensic context, is almost invariably linked – is presented, studied, and practiced differently in various countries and contexts. This, in association with the fact that archaeologists have been employed in much greater numbers in an international context (e.g., with the UN in the former Yugoslavia), has resulted in ambiguous practice and definition. This chapter will examine four different activities that are often referred to as “forensic archaeology” and will discuss examples of how, where, and by whom they have been practiced. The chapter will examine common elements among the activities as well as important distinctions. The four activities presented, though not mutually exclusive, are (I) domestic forensic archaeology, (II) international forensic archaeology, (III) repatriation-focused archaeology, and (IV) mass fatality archaeology.

Keywords

Forensic archaeology Domestic forensic archaeology International forensic archaeology Repatriation-focused archaeology Mass fatality archaeology Criminal-legal investigation 

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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Munk School of Global AffairsUniversity of TorontoTorontoCanada

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