Stable isotope analysis of humans
2013 (English)In: The Oxford Handbook of the Archaeology of Death and Burial / [ed] Tarlow, Sarah & Nilsson Stutz, Liv, Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2013, 123-146 p.Chapter in book (Other academic)
Stable isotope analyses of skeletal remains have become increasingly important within the field of archaeology during the past few decades. Given that the analyses can (under certain circumstances) provide direct data at the individual level regarding, for example, subsistence, actual consumption of specific foodstuffs, the transition from foraging to farming, breastfeeding patterns, mobility, migration and contact with other groups, this is not surprising. This chapter provides an overview of the kind of archaeological issues that can be addressed with the use of stable isotope analyses, based on four of the most commonly used light elements (carbon, nitrogen, oxygen and sulphur), with an emphasis on carbon and nitrogen. The applications are illustrated with examples from various parts of the world, ranging from Pleistocene to Medieval date. It also deals with how and why the analyses work, and bring up some methodological limitations and potential pitfalls.
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2013. 123-146 p.
, Oxford handbooks
archaeology, stable isotope analysis, bone chemistry, collagen, review
Research subject Archaeological Science
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-99734DOI: 10.1093/oxfordhb/9780199569069.013.0008ISBN: 9780199569069OAI: oai:DiVA.org:su-99734DiVA: diva2:694332