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Woods Lectures

J. James Woods Lecture Series

The "Woods" Series was established by a generous gift from the estate of J. James Woods. The goal of the Woods bequest is to bring prominent mathematicians and scientists to Butler University in order to speak on theories at the frontier of their disciplines, as well as on related technologies and other issues of public concern.

The 2018–2019 Season is announced! See our entire 2018–2019 Woods Series Schedule.

Kristina Killgrove

Kristina Killgrove Reading Past Lives: How Archaeologists Understand the Stories Written in Bone.

Tuesday, April 2, 7:30 PM, Atherton Union, Reilly Room

Human skeletons are fascinating to most people. As products of biological processes like growth and development as well as culturally informed practices like dining, migrating, and working, bones and teeth are inscribed with a wealth of information about a person's life. The scientists who are trained to 'read' the life stories from past people's skeletons are bioarchaeologists. Working all over the world, these researchers use a combination of techniques from biology, anatomy, chemistry, history, and anthropology to bring back to life individuals and their collective culture from their skeletal remains. This public lecture illustrates with case studies the information that bioarchaeologists like Dr. Killgrove are learning about the global human past and how that information is being communicated to the world at large.

Dr. Kristina Killgrove is an award-winning science writer and archaeologist based in Chapel Hill, NC. Her research focuses on the analysis of human skeletal remains from Imperial-era Italy, and her ongoing project at Oplontis near Naples involves the excavation, osteological analysis, and biochemical analysis of people killed in the catastrophic eruption of Mt. Vesuvius in 79 AD. Killgrove writes a regular column about archaeology for Forbes, and her popular science book on Roman bioarchaeology will debut in late 2019.


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All Woods Lectures are free & open to the public—no tickets required.