November 16, 2011

With some trepidation. . . .

Filed under: Forensic archaeology, Public Health, Rome — acagle @ 12:00 pm

I actually mention “the 99%”: An Archaeologist Wants The Story Of Rome’s 99%

When you think of Roman history, the first things that come to mind are probably the stories of emperors, gladiators, and soldiers. That’s mostly because those are the aspects of Roman life that we know the most about, thanks to written histories and abundant archaeological evidence.

But of course, most Romans weren’t emperors or soliders. They were slaves, potters, farmers, artists, beggars, prostitutes, butchers, and all of the other professions that make the day to day work of an Empire work. However, given the sharp class divisions through most of Rome’s history, we don’t know a lot about how everyday people lived.

Which is all well and good, of course, but not why I linked. The story is basically an advertisement for something called ‘crowdfunding’: getting direct donations from the general public for research. What a neat idea. There’s a video at the link that explains the project — by Kristina Killgrove — and also a link to her web site for the project. Apparently, she’s already gotten the needed funding.

Archaeologists talk about this a lot, that much of history is written by and about a very small portion of the civilization, so the idea isn’t all that new, at least amongst those of us that follow these things. But it’s nice to see it getting some attention. At this very moment I am downloading her dissertation to see what she found on the health status in her study. Take a look at the whole set of links and donate if you so desire — AFTER you’ve hit my PayPal button, of course. . . . .

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