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Estimating Sex from Bones of the Hands and Feet: A Bioarchaeological Study of the Ancient Maya Site of Blue Creek, Belize

Author(s): Seth Winstead ; Katherine Miller Wolf ; Hannah Plumer

Year: 2017

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Summary

For bioarchaeologists, biological sex estimation based off of skeletal indicators is a crucial element when creating a biological profile for human remains. While there are several ways for estimating sex, primarily involving examining cranial and pelvic morphology, one useful method that remains underutilized is metric analysis of bones from the hands and feet. Since males and females are sexually dimorphic, the ability to discriminate biological sex from hand and foot bones is possible and is shown to be valid. Skeletal metric data drawn from the hands and feet have successfully discriminated between male and female (bio)archaeological remains in Europe and throughout North America. Osteometric data for a Maya population from Nojol Nah in the Blue Creek region of Belize are presented to demonstrate the utility of such metrics in estimating sex. These data are useful to archaeologists or bioarchaeologists working with fragmentary or isolated remains in the field or lab.


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Estimating Sex from Bones of the Hands and Feet: A Bioarchaeological Study of the Ancient Maya Site of Blue Creek, Belize. Seth Winstead, Katherine Miller Wolf, Hannah Plumer. Presented at The 81st Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, Vancouver, British Columbia. 2017 ( tDAR id: 430572)


Keywords

Geographic Keywords
Mesoamerica


Spatial Coverage

min long: -107.271; min lat: 12.383 ; max long: -86.353; max lat: 23.08 ;

Record Identifiers

Abstract Id(s): 16283

Arizona State University The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation National Science Foundation National Endowment for the Humanities Society for American Archaeology Archaeological Institute of America