12. The Bioarchaeological Investigation of Children and Childhood

  1. Sabrina C. Agarwal B.A., M.Sc., Ph.D.3 and
  2. Bonnie A. Glencross B.Sc., M.A., Ph.D.4
  1. Siân E. Halcrow Ph.D.1 and
  2. Nancy Tayles2

Published Online: 27 APR 2011

DOI: 10.1002/9781444390537.ch12

Social Bioarchaeology

Social Bioarchaeology

How to Cite

Halcrow, S. E. and Tayles, N. (2011) The Bioarchaeological Investigation of Children and Childhood, in Social Bioarchaeology (eds S. C. Agarwal and B. A. Glencross), Wiley-Blackwell, Oxford, UK. doi: 10.1002/9781444390537.ch12

Editor Information

  1. 3

    University of California Berkeley, USA

  2. 4

    Wilfrid Laurier University in Ontario, Canada

Author Information

  1. 1

    University of Otago, New Zealand

  2. 2

    University of Otago, Dunedin, New Zealand

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 27 APR 2011
  2. Published Print: 28 JAN 2011

Book Series:

  1. Blackwell Studies in Global Archaeology

Book Series Editors:

  1. Lynn Meskell and
  2. Rosemary A. Joyce

ISBN Information

Print ISBN: 9781405191876

Online ISBN: 9781444390537



  • bioarchaeological investigation of children and childhood;
  • initial interest in archaeology of childhood - feminist approaches in 1970s;
  • rising tensions, social archaeologists and bioarchaeologists - study of human remains;
  • bioarchaeological studies - social age categories into analysis of skeletal populations;
  • “Non-adult,” as an alternative to “subadult”;
  • bioarchaeological approaches - to subadult health and disease and childhood;
  • health and disease measures - bioarchaeological methods of analysis of mortality, pathology and trauma;
  • infant mortality, understanding environmental factors - affecting fetus and infant;
  • dental health and disease, another avenue - for studying diet and health, and dental health;
  • bioarchaeologists, bodies of infants and children - shaped by biological, and social and cultural factors


This chapter contains sections titled:

  • Introduction

  • Terminology and Age Categories

  • Bioarchaeological Approaches to Subadult Health and Disease and Childhood

  • Measures of Health and Disease

  • Sample Bias and Osteological Interpretation

  • Childhood Social Theory and Identifying Social Age in Archaeology

  • Conclusion

  • References