Anthropology Magazine

The Problem of Imagining the Real


  • Conflicted

  • Crisis

    Coronavirus Bergamo

    What Will Italy Become Without Its Elders?

    The coronavirus has swept away a generation of wisdom-keepers, WWII survivors, storytellers, parents, and grandparents in Bergamo, Italy. An anthropologist mourns with her community—the hardest hit in the country—and asks all of us the most difficult questions of this pandemic.


    human remains ethics

    Is It Ever OK to Publish Photographs of Human Remains?

    In many cultures, people consider it unethical, insensitive, and harmful to photograph human remains, much less to make such an image viewable to the public. The SAPIENS editorial team explains its philosophy and approach to handling images of human remains.

  • Field Notes

    mortuary archaeology - The Slavia Field School in Mortuary Archaeology in Drawsko, Poland, unearthed a 400-year-old cemetery.

    Digging up the Dead

    An archaeological field school experience shines a light on the grave concerns people have about the treatment of human remains.

  • Snapshot

    mexico border - A child’s backpack abandoned on a migrant trail in the Tumacácori Mountains suffers the decay of time.

    What Migrants Leave Behind

    Piles of backpacks, empty water jugs, and even high heels left scattered on migrant trails leave visible markers of the desperation and endurance of those who traveled there.

  • Podcast

    why do we bury the dead

    How to Care for the Dead

    How long have we been burying the dead? And why is it so haunting when we can’t set those who have passed to rest?