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Children and Childhood in Bioarchaeology$
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Patrick Beauchesne and Sabrina C. Agarwal

Print publication date: 2018

Print ISBN-13: 9780813056807

Published to Florida Scholarship Online: January 2019

DOI: 10.5744/florida/9780813056807.001.0001

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The Bioarchaeology of Childhood

The Bioarchaeology of Childhood

Theoretical Development in the Field

(p.33) 1 The Bioarchaeology of Childhood
Children and Childhood in Bioarchaeology

Raelene M. Inglis

Siân E. Halcrow

University Press of Florida

Over the past two decades, there has been a rapid increase of research in the study of children and childhood in the past from anthropological, archaeological, and bioarchaeological perspectives. Despite recent research and theoretical developments, the advancement of research into childhood in the past continues to be somewhat hampered by the disparate theoretical approaches that are applied. This chapter reviews both the development of the bioarchaeological study of childhood and the important theoretical issues – including age, gender, and biocultural approaches – and offers suggestions for the development of approaches that “speak” between the different theoretical perspectives in the study of childhood in the past. Suggested future research directions include the integration of biological aspects into the social life course approach, by incorporating aspects of the biologically underpinned life history theoretical approach. Another imperative is to critically evaluate the attribution and meaning of “agency” in the bioarchaeology of childhood.

Keywords:   Childhood, Agency, Life Course, Bioarchaeology, biocultural approach

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