Sex Without the Head or the Hips: The Inferences Made on Bone and the Use of the Lower Body to Estimate Sex
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When it comes to the sex estimation of a skeleton, the main factors contributing to which methods are used depend on which skeletal elements are present. When a skeleton is uncovered that is essentially complete, with little deterioration due to taphonomic processes, it can be easy to use morphological methods in identifying sex. These methods generally rely on the use of the skull and the pelvic gridle. However, when it comes to archaeological excavations and forensic cases, the remains that are uncovered are rarely in perfect condition and seldom complete. It has become essential within studies to identify methods revolving around the estimation of sex through a variety of skeletal remains, such as the bones of the lower body. Although the postcranial bones of the lower body can be sexed, the methods are less widely applicable since they are much more population specific than the sexually dimorphic traits of the skull and pelvis. However, more work must be done in the use of the lower body in order to standardize these methods and broaden their applicability. Through an examination of the literature and published studies, a database has been created that focuses on investigations that analyze sex methodologies from the bones of the lower body. It is through the analysis associated with this database in which themes have been uncovered that need to be addressed. These themes involve the correlation between elements, the use of univariate and multivariate analysis, the measurements taken on the bones and which show more dimorphism than others, discussions surrounding which side of the bones have been utilized and evidence of asymmetry. By utilizing metric methods and creating a database that addresses the standards and problems surrounding these methods, we have the ability to offer other options, as well as provide the opportunity to highlight the ability to identify the diversity of past peoples’ social and biological identity through a much wider selection of skeletal elements.
Cite this version of the work
Tamara Graham (2021). Sex Without the Head or the Hips: The Inferences Made on Bone and the Use of the Lower Body to Estimate Sex. UWSpace. http://hdl.handle.net/10012/16647