Anthropology & Funerary Archeology Group - GAAF 2018

Meeting around the diseased body: support and funerary treatment for suffering individuals through centuries

Gaaf 2018

Visible or invisible, sudden or chronic, handicapping or just slightly invalidating, diseases affected continually ancient populations. Over the centuries and millenia, human groups have worked out various solutions to face them, medically, religiously, or even legally. Depending on location and time, the ill were treated in a variable manner, being socially included or excluded, cared for or left out, invested with magical powers or taxed with ignominy. But, whatever the terms of burial site or care(s) for the body, what was the fate reserved for the diseased corpse in past societies? That's the question asked for the 10th Meeting of GAAF (Anthropology and Funerary Archaeology Group), putting in the center of debates the individuals who suffered from different affections, from prehistory to recent times.

With an international and multidisciplinary vocation, this colloquium intends to be a place of exchange and encounters between researchers from diverse horizons, inviting contributions of archaeologists and anthropologists working on various chrono-geographical contexts, as well as actors in other social sciences (historians, sociologists, ethnologists, for example). If the paleopathological diagnostic may of course be important to address an issue based on the connection to the ill and their corpse, the meeting will not aim to welcome communications mainly focused on skeletal manifestations of pathologies. Presentations underlining discussion on social and funerary aspects will be preferred. The latter will be approached in a certain way by emblematic case studies. However, at least for oral communications, synthesis works concerning the care and funerary treatment for the ill from a site, a region or a territory will be privileged.


The scientific discussions will be based around four themes :

  • Theme 1 – To Host: the places to care for and bury the diseased

  • Theme 2 – To Bury: the corpse's treatment

  • Theme 3 – To Accompany: objects, material and symbols

  • Theme 4 – To Heal, repair, dissect: human remains, witnesses of ante- and post-mortem medico-surgical practices


Call for presentation open until 1st November 2017


Organizing comity: Sacha Kacki, Hélène Réveillas, Christopher Knüsel

Scientific comity: Yann Ardagna (CNRS, UMR 7268 - ADES) Joël Blondiaux (Centre d'Etudes Paléopathologiques du Nord) Dominique Castex (CNRS, UMR 5199 - PACEA) Valérie Delattre (Inrap & UMR 7250 - ARTeHIS) Sacha Kacki (UMR 5199 - PACEA) Christopher Knüsel (Université de Bordeaux, UMR 5199 - PACEA) Marilyn Nicoud (Université d’Avignon et des pays de Vaucluse, UMR 5648 - CIHAM) Hélène Réveillas (Centre d’Archéologie Préventive Bordeaux Métropole & UMR 5199 - PACEA) Stéfan Tzortzis (CNRS, UMR 7268 - ADES) Sébastien Villotte (CNRS, UMR 5199 - PACEA) Mathieu Vivas (postdoc LaScArBx, UMR 5607 - Ausonius) Jean Zammit (UMR 5608 - TRACES) Aurélie Zémour (chaire LaScArBx, UMR 5607 - Ausonius)

archaeology funerary archaeology disease pathology

Athénée municipale Bordeaux France