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Digging deeper: What living athletes can tell us about behaviour in prehistory

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Human bones are highly adaptable, tailoring their size and shape in response to the conditions to which they are exposed, particularly during growth and development. Because of this adaptability during life, human skeletal remains can provide a wealth of information about the living conditions and behaviour patterns of men and women in the past. However, interpreting that information can be challenging. This talk outlines the ways in which cutting-edge bone imaging technologies and the study of living athletes are helping anthropologists to better understand the role of physical activity and muscle tissue in driving variation in bone size and shape, and what this new information means for more richly interpreting prehistoric behaviour from skeletal remains.

This talk is part of the Darwin College Sciences Group series.

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