Understanding Old People's burial places: a case study from Ngarrindjeri ruwe, South Australia

Niland, K., Domett, K., and Wallis, L.A. (2009) Understanding Old People's burial places: a case study from Ngarrindjeri ruwe, South Australia. In: HOMO: Journal of Comparative Human Biology (60) p. 252. From: Australasian Society for Human Biology Annual Meeting, December 2007, Dunedin, New Zealand.

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At the request of the Ngarrindjeri community, a burial complex located in the Kurangk (Coorong), South Australia, was investigated as a component of a broader conservation program. This involved excavation and on-site analysis of two individuals prior to their reburial and site rehabilitation. The characteristics of age, sex, pathology, trauma and the nature of the burial place itself (incorporating mortuary practices) were analysed and compared with ethnohistorical and contemporary Ngarrindjeri practices. Radiocarbon dating of charcoal associated with one of the burials revealed it had occurred ca. 2200 years ago, and was of an elderly woman. Also present was a secondary reburial of another elderly individual (whose sex could not be ascertained with confidence), offering empirical support for a long-standing tradition of Ngarrindjeri people caring for the burial places of their Old People. Analysis of joint degeneration and dental wear of both individuals also provided evidence for a range of cultural activities including basket weaving, net making and cockle collecting.

Item ID: 23543
Item Type: Conference Item (Abstract / Summary)
ISSN: 0018-442X
Date Deposited: 03 Oct 2012 05:29
FoR Codes: 16 STUDIES IN HUMAN SOCIETY > 1601 Anthropology > 160102 Biological (Physical) Anthropology @ 100%
SEO Codes: 95 CULTURAL UNDERSTANDING > 9505 Understanding Past Societies > 950503 Understanding Australias Past @ 100%
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