Open Access (free)
Face to face with the past
Author: Melanie Giles

The ‘bog bodies’ of north-western Europe have captured the imagination of poets as much as archaeologists, confronting us with human remains where time has stopped – allowing us to come ‘face to face’ with individuals from the past. Their exceptional preservation allows us to examine unprecedented details of both their lives and deaths, making us reflect poignantly upon our own mortality. Yet this book argues that they must be resituated within a turbulent world of endemic violence and change, reinterpreting the latest Continental research and new discoveries in this light. The book features a ground-breaking ‘cold case’ forensic study of Worsley Man: Manchester Museum’s ‘bog head’ and brings the bogs to life through both natural history and folklore, as places that were rich, fertile, yet dangerous. Finally, it argues that these remains do not just pose practical conservation problems but philosophical dilemmas, compounded by the critical debate on if – and how – they should be displayed, with museum exemplars drawn from across the globe

Open Access (free)
Deaths and politicised deaths in Buenos Aires’s refuse
Mariano D. Perelman

The appearance of corpses in rubbish tips is not a recent phenomenon. In Argentina, tips have served not only as sites for the disposal of bodies but also as murder scenes. Many of these other bodies found in such places belong to individuals who have suffered violent deaths, which go on to become public issues, or else are ‘politicised deaths’. Focusing on two cases that have received differing degrees of social, political and media attention – Diego Duarte, a 15-year-old boy from a poor background who went waste-picking on an open dump and never came back, and Ángeles Rawson, a girl of 16 murdered in the middle-class neighbourhood of Colegiales, whose body was found in the same tip – this article deals with the social meanings of bodies that appear in landfills. In each case, there followed a series of events that placed a certain construction on the death – and, more importantly, the life – of the victim. Corpses, once recognised, become people, and through this process they are given new life. It is my contention that bodies in rubbish tips express – and configure – not only the limits of the social but also, in some cases, the limits of the human itself.

Human Remains and Violence: An Interdisciplinary Journal
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The French search mission for the corpses of deportees in Germany, 1946–58
Jean-Marc Dreyfus

6 Renationalizing bodies? The French search mission for the corpses of deportees in Germany, 1946–58 1 Jean-Marc Dreyfus Introduction Corpses are not a research subject that a historian would normally choose, and less still corpses en masse. Whether approaches to mass violence are of political, social or cultural history, the ­historical analysis of societies tends to focus on the living, and corpses are discussed only in terms of a social group’s structure in relation to death, the social definition of which can be addressed only through a detailed cultural

in Human remains and mass violence
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Victim, witness and evidence of mass violence
Caroline Fournet

3 The human body: victim, witness and evidence of mass violence1 Caroline Fournet Introduction In the context of international criminal law and case law, the fact that the individual, as a human being, is the target of criminals against humanity and génocidaires alike is a legal reality that raises no doubt or controversy.2 The definition of a crime against humanity protects ‘any civilian population’,3 while that of genocide refers to the victim ‘group’.4 Further, both definitions protect the physical and moral integrity of the individual – although the text of

in Human remains and mass violence
One Billion Rising, dance and gendered violence
Dana Mills

83 5 Dancing the ruptured body: One Billion Rising, dance and gendered violence I move the reader–​spectator to view the performance of a protest movement that calls on us to end violence against women through the power of dance. One Billion Rising, initiated by feminist author and activist Eve Ensler, calls for a global uprising on Valentine’s Day, utilising dance to protest against gendered violence. The impact of the movement has been far-​reaching and its scope ambitious. The site of the movement is the moving body upon which gendered violence is inscribed

in Dance and politics
Open Access (free)
Melanie Giles

Introduction They lay in the peat moss 28 years and 9 months before they were looked at again, when some Countrymen, having observed, I suppose, the extraordinary Quality of this Soil, in preserving dead bodies from corrupting, were curious enough to open the ground to see if these Persons had been so preserved, and found them in no way altered, the Colour of their Skin being fair and natural, their Flesh soft as that of Persons newly dead. (Part of a letter from Dr Charles Balguy of Peterborough, to Cromwell Mortimer, MD, cited in Balguy 1735 : 413) This

in Bog bodies
Open Access (free)
The ‘pathology’ of childhood in late nineteenth-century London
Steven Taylor

supervising, controlling, and disciplining individual bodies. 3 With regard to ‘child rescue’, the moniker given to evangelical attempts at ‘improving’ the lives of children living in poverty in the late nineteenth century, the scholarship is less complete, especially when it comes to the sick and disabled. 4 By considering the treatment and experience of the impaired/disabled child in a voluntary organisation, the Church of England-sponsored Waifs and Strays Society, this

in Progress and pathology
Laura Panizo

This article will investigate the process of confronting death in cases of the disappeared of the last military dictatorship in Argentina. Based on the exhumation and identification of the body of a disappeared person, the article will reflect on how the persons social situation can be reconfigured, causing structural changes within the family and other groups. This will be followed by a discussion of the reflections generated by the anthropologist during his or her interview process, as well as an investigation into the authors own experiences in the field. This intimate relationship between the anthropologist and death, through the inevitable contact that takes place among the bodies, causes resonances in the context both of exhumations and of identifications in the anthropologists wider fieldwork.

Human Remains and Violence: An Interdisciplinary Journal
Ideology, physical destruction, and memory
Rémi Korman

9 The Tutsi body in the 1994 genocide: ideology, physical destruction, and memory Rémi Korman Since 1994, bodies have been at the centre of the memorialization of the Tutsi genocide. For, in addition to constituting evidence in the context of forensic investigations, they are publicly exhibited in memorials to the genocide. The display of bodies aims principally to remind visitors of the historical facts of the genocide: not only the sites of massacres, but also the form these took. Far from being an incidental detail, the methods employed by the killers are an

in Destruction and human remains