Cornell University

Book Talk: Social Zooarchaeology: Humans and Animals in Prehistory

Tuesday, November 13, 2012 at 4:30pm

Olin Library, 106G
Olin Library, Ithaca, NY 14850, USA

Animals have touched the life of every human, whether it’s raising them for food, keeping them as pets, or just observing them in their natural environment. Join Nerissa Russell for a "Chat in the Stacks" about her book "Social Zooarchaeology: Humans and Animals in Prehistory" (Cambridge University Press, November 2011). Her book is the first to provide a systematic overview of social zooarchaeology, the study of past human-animal relations, and takes a holistic view of these fascinating relationships.

Until recently, most archaeologists focused on the role of animals in the human diet and subsistence economy, but animals have always played many more important roles in human societies as companions, spirit helpers, sacrificial victims, centerpieces of feasts, objects of taboos, and more. Using evidence derived not only from zooarchaeology, but ethnography, history, and classical studies, Russell suggests the range of human-animal relationships is quite extensive and very relevant today.

Following the talk, Dr. Russell, Associate Professor and Chair of the Department of Anthropology at Cornell, will lead a question and answer session. Light refreshments will be available throughout the event and books will be available for purchase and signing.

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Cornell University Library, Anthropology



Free and open to all



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Lynn Bertoia

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Nerissa Russell

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