Treasure Hunters Pose Problems for Archaeologists
Hipólito Sanchiz Alvarez de Toledo and Hipólito Sanchiz Alcaraz
Two scholars discuss the challenges of accurately studying underwater archaeological heritage—among them, unauthorized acquisitions.
The Vibrant Worlds of Batuan Paintings in Bali
Annie Tucker and Robert Lemelson
A new multimedia project connects the development of a Balinese regional painting style with anthropologists Margaret Mead and Gregory Bateson, who began commissioning art in the region in the 1930s.
Ancient Pollen Is Hiding in a Surprising Place
A paleoecologist explains what pollen in fossilized mammal urine can reveal about past ecosystems and environmental change.
Dismantling the Walls in Our Heads
The Berlin Wall fell more than three decades ago—but political, social, and economic divides between East and West Germany continue to reverberate, even among those born after Reunification.
Spend a Day Tracking Chimpanzees
A series of short videos captures a rare view into the lives of wild chimps through the eyes of a researcher.
In Defense of Museums
Stephen E. Nash
In response to news of ethical violations by museums, a curator reflects on the past and future missions of such institutions.
Restoring Faces and Dignity to Skeletal Remains
An anthropologist explains how a South African university used community-driven research to honor human remains acquired unethically.
I Was Penalized for Learning a Language at Home
Veronica Valencia Gonzalez
A researcher explains why the Fulbright-Hays fellowship should change its rules that have kept native and heritage speakers from working where their languages are spoken.
To Wear the Wind
Beni Sumer Yanthan
A tribal scholar from the state of Nagaland in India engages with the loss of traditional cultural practices and locates the creation of a new world order where the “natural” is increasingly isolated from the “human.”
Raising My Children in an Ableist World
Thomas W. Pearson
In a new book, an anthropologist and father of three, including a daughter with Down syndrome, reflects on the pressures of parenting.
What Ancient Egyptians Knew About Meteorites—Long Before Modern Astronomers
An Egyptologist’s study of hieroglyphic texts has revealed that ancient Egyptians likely understood the celestial origins of iron-rich meteorites.
Do Strict Criminal Penalties Protect Animals From Abuse?
In Mexico, a growing animal protection movement often promotes harsh criminal punishment for those who abuse animals. But are these strategies working, or do they lead to further injustices?
Past and Present Approaches to the Management of Red Deer
An archaeologist weighs the pros and cons driving debates around the rising population of Scotland’s renowned animal and explains what historical archaeology could add to the conversation.
Decoding Diversity and Power at Machu Picchu
New DNA analysis has revealed surprising diversity among remains from burial sites in Peru. A genetic anthropologist explains what this suggests about the 15th century Inca palace.
Inside Mexico City’s Surveillance State
An anthropologist investigates how one city’s rapidly expanding video surveillance system is transforming criminal investigation—sometimes in deeply flawed ways.
Through Film, Discovering Hope in the Face of Environmental Destruction
In the midst of acute eco-anxiety, can community-based filmmaking help young people imagine a different future?
What Ancient Goat Teeth Reveal About Animal Care
Unraveling a mystery around millennia-old goat bones, an archaeologist reflects on the harm people can cause their most cherished animals.
The Hidden Ancestry Extracted From an Ancient Pendant
An anthropologist explains how new forensics tools offer unprecedented answers to questions about who likely held or wore Stone Age objects.
Archaeological Tropes That Perpetuate Colonialism
Nicholas C. Laluk and Joseph Aguilar
Two Indigenous archaeologists from the U.S. Southwest shed light on how “abandonment” and other common archaeological terms continue to cause harm. They offer insights into how to rewrite narratives of the past.
Forensic Methods Unveil Clues About Megafauna Extinctions
Christopher R. Moore
An archaeologist explains how novel applications of forensic methods—namely, blood residue analyses—have yielded evidence that Paleoindians hunted mastodons, mammoths, and other megafauna in eastern North America 13,000 years ago.
How Eugenics Shaped the U.S. Prenatal Care System
Dána-Ain Davis and Kelley Akhiemokhali
Black women in the U.S. are far more likely to die from complications related to pregnancy and birth than White women. Two scholars explore how the discrediting of Black midwives helped create these racial disparities—and call for alternative models of prenatal care.
Speaking in Tongues
Beni Sumer Yanthan
A scholar from Nagaland in India offers visceral, familial insights on language and culture loss in her Indigenous tribal community.
Bringing Nhakpoti, the Kayapó Story of Star Girl, to the Screen
Paul Chilsen, Glenn H. Shepard Jr., and Pat-i Kayapó
Over years and across long distances, an international filmmaking team collaborated to bring to life the origin story of how agriculture came to Kayapó communities, Indigenous peoples in the Brazilian Amazon.
Dating the Arrival of Modern Humans in Asia
Kira Westaway, Meghan McAllister-Hayward, Mike W. Morley, Renaud Joannes-Boyau, and Vito C. Hernandez
A team of researchers explains how the discovery of a human skull and jawbone helps push back the timing of modern humans’ migration into Southeast Asia.
Can Archaeology Help Restore the Oceans?
Todd Braje, Emma Elliott Smith, Juliette Meling, and Torben Rick
On the Channel Islands, archaeologists draw lessons in sustainability from historic Chumash fishing practices.
Imagining Other Worlds at the India-Pakistan Border
For decades, soldiers at the border between Attari, India, and Wagah, Pakistan, have staged an elaborate ceremony for onlookers. An anthropologist reflects on the ceremony as a legacy of Partition—and imagines other futures for the two nations.
What Pots Say—and Don’t Say—About People
Archaeologists long abandoned the simple notion that “pots are people”—that people’s identities directly correspond with the pottery they made and used. What, then, can ceramics reveal about past lives?
Writing Indigenous Oral Tradition to Fight a Dam
Karminn C.D. Daytec Yañgot
In the northern Philippines, the Isnag are documenting their Traditional Stories to sustain their culture and fight a legal battle against dams that would inundate their homelands.
The Persistence of Fukushima’s Fisherfolk
In a new book, an anthropologist with long-term ties to northeastern Japan shares stories of how fishing communities have continued making a living in uncertain waters after the 2011 earthquake, tsunami, and Fukushima nuclear disaster.
On the Quandaries of Aquatic Forensics
Paola A. Magni, Edda Guareschi, and Rossella Paba
A team of scientists, including an anthropologist, explains the challenges and methods for locating, identifying, and retrieving human remains from underwater.
Cold Hubris and Fundo
A poet-historian reflects on the legacy of colonial-era collecting practices in Tanzania that tore Black Indigenous ancestors from their communities and history.
Extinguishing the Idea That Hobbits Had Fire
Elizabeth Grace Veatch
Research has overturned earlier claims that a diminutive human relative,
, lit fires—but big stories die hard.
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An editorially independent anthropology magazine of the Wenner-Gren Foundation
& University of Chicago Press